Monday, July 19, 2010

First, Second, Third - Smoke and Chemicals

Probably a year ago, a MassGeneral pediatrician coined the term third hand smoke or THS. He was quoted on this in several national publications at the time and I continue to be asked about this during my presentations.

I tell my audiences and classes that I absolutely concur with him on the concept and the harm from THS, but not the name. Third Hand Smoke, as he refers, is the chemical residue left behind in buildings and cars, on upholstery and skin. It is not smoke at all, but a dirty noxious film.

Dr. Winickoff has spoken again. He was interviewed and quoted by the Boston Globe on July 12, 2010 after a joint letter from he and colleagues was published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The letter was a call to ban smoking in Public Housing complexes.

Super YAY for that. We are working on such an initiative in Manatee County Florida. Dr. Winickoff explains how the smoke seeps through doors, cracks, air and heat systems and can harm the most vulnerable citizens (youngest and oldest). Massachusetts bans smoking in cars with kids, so he may "get er done."

On a personal note, I just agreed to pay an additional 20 dollars in rent for my new place in North Carolina - for a totally tobacco free building!

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