Smoking cigarettes will kill you. You know that. Well-meaning people have been telling you that since before your first puff. But did you know your habit is also harming the people around you? Yes, your coworkers, friends, and spouse are also feeling the negative effects of your habit. Even worse, it’s hurting your kids. Children are among the hardest hit victims of secondhand smoke. How exactly does your nicotine habit hurt your young ones? And what can you do to help prevent this harm? Read on to find out.
Smoking Hurts Your Kids
Secondhand smoke may seems harmless, just a minor matter of a bad smell and inconvenience to nonsmokers. How bad could it be? It’s not like secondhand smokers are taking in lungs full of poisoned air like you are, right? Well, unfortunately, it’s a little more complicated than that. According the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 2.5 million Americans have died from secondhand smoke in the last 50 years. Negative effects include heart disease, lung cancer, stroke.
Children feel the effects profoundly. In addition the the aforementioned conditioned, CDC says that kids suffer from ear infections, general respiratory problems, even sudden infant death syndrome, more often when in the presence of smokers. Long term exposure, of course, makes things much worse.
Kids Imitate Their Parents
Beyond the basic health effects of secondhand smoke on kids, children whose parents smoke are much more likely to develop their own bad habits eventually. According to a recent survey from the US National Survey on Drug Use and Health, young girls whose mothers smoked were nearly four times more likely to develop their own nicotine addiction. When you smoke, your kids are watching. Your children look to you for guidance in the world. You provide the model. Keep that in mind the next time you light up.
If you don’t have kids but would like to have them some day, why not quit now? Having young children is a very stressful time, and it stays difficult for a long, long time. Quit now while you’ve got stress to spare. Get ahead of things. You’ll thank yourself one day. And so will your kids.
You Can Stop it
Quit smoking. Now. You can do it. You want to do it, the world wants you to do it. There are resources everywhere. And if you do, you’ll be in good company. People quit smoking all the time. While it’s true that people often only quit temporarily, tons of people manage to kick the nic permanently. And even a temporary break doesn’t hurt. Think of it as practice for the real thing. 25% of people who try to stop smoking can keep it up for 6 months if they have the aid of medicine. Even if you don’t cut it completely out that first time, you’ve trained yourself for the big one. No marathon runner simply got off the couch one day and accomplished their goal in one shot. It takes time and practice. You can earn your children’s respect. You can keep your kids safe. You can do this.