Secondhand Smoke and How it Affects You

Also known as environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), Secondhand smoke (SHS) is an amalgamation of mainstream and sidestream smoke. Mainstream smoke is the smoke exhaled by a smoker, while sidestream smoke is the smoke that emerges from a lighted cigarette. Comprising of many carcinogens or cancer-causing substances, this latter kind of smoke is really toxic and can easily make way into your lungs and body cells.

A person exposed to secondhand smoke (or a passive smoker) is at the receiving end of the same nicotine and toxic chemicals as a smoker.

Why is secondhand smoke a problem?

Comprising of more than 7000 chemicals, SHS is one of the causes of global deaths arising due to many lung-related and cardiovascular diseases. Secondhand smoke leads to many health problems including asthma, cardiovascular problems, respiratory ailments, and infections. It can also majorly affect the health of infants causing ear infections, asthma attacks and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). 

Passive smoking has many downstream health effects. Some of the health conditions caused by secondhand smoke in adults are coronary heart disease, stroke, and lung cancer.

How SHS adversely affect your heart’s health?

Breathing secondhand smoke can adversely interfere with your blood vessels, and shoots up the risk of cardiac arrest. There is no acceptable level of getting exposed to SHS. Even limited exposure can irritate the lining of blood vessels, causing them to swell (inflammation). It can also lead to endothelial dysfunction, which makes the arteries unable to dilate. Both of these conditions are associated with many forms of cardiovascular diseases.

SHS – one of the main causes of Lung Cancer

Even a brief exposure to secondhand smoke can damage body cells and lead to lung cancer. However, some studies suggest that there is no direct link between passive smoking and lung cancer. Yet, it is definitely a risk factor and must be avoided at all costs.

Secondhand smoke exposure during pregnancy

If a woman is exposed to SHS during pregnancy, there can be major complications during childbirth including preterm delivery, low birth weight and impaired lung development of the infant. 

Thus, it is clear that that secondhand smoke can trigger a lot of health problems, the symptoms of which might seem small in the beginning but can add up in the long run to increase your medical bills. 

To avoid secondhand smoke, try to refrain from sitting at outdoor places that allow smoking, and encouraging those around you to quit.

Asthprash, a formulation infused with the goodness of many ayurvedic herbs, is a natural way to remove the smoking tar and such toxic compounds that get lodged in your lungs over a period of time. With no side-effects, Asthprash starts showing results within 2 weeks of regular consumption.

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