Create a Smoke-Free Environment for Those Around You

October 1, 2015

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Create a Smoke-Free Environment for Those Around You
Photo Courtesy: Kailey Donovan 

Why Secondhand Smoke Could Be Harming Your Work Environment

It is a well-known fact that smoking is extremely harmful towards your health. It is one of the leading causes of preventable death in America. However, did you know that over time secondhand smoke could also lead to cancer and other health issues in non-smokers?

What is secondhand smoke?

Secondhand smoke is when a non-smoker breaths in the smoke from a cigarette, as well as the smoke breathed out by the smoker.

Why is secondhand smoke dangerous?

Secondhand smoke contains thousands of harmful chemicals. At least 250 are known to damage your health. It has over 70 toxic chemicals that are known to cause cancer. Secondhand smoke could also increase your risk for developing heart disease. In addition, it could cause other issues such as, coughing, extra phlegm, wheezing, and shortness of breath. It takes just thirty minutes of secondhand smoke exposure daily for a non-smoker to develop heart damage similar to that of a habitual smoker. 

Working on a college campus makes it difficult to avoid secondhand smoke. There are students smoking as they walk to each class. Professors and other UNH employees are seen smoking during their lunch break. It is important for smokers to think about how they are damaging the health of others in addition to their own. 

Why should non-smokers suffer health consequences because of someone else’s cigarette smoke?

Well they should not have to. UNH is a part of the Tobacco Free Campus Initiative. The University wishes to protect the health of students and faculty, as well as the campus buildings and grounds. If you are a member of the UNH faculty, it is important to set a good example for those around you. Even if that means smoking a little further away from people, or quitting smoking altogether. Remember, if you do choose to smoke please be aware of the 20 feet rule, and smoke 20 feet away from any building on campus.

If you are a UNH employee looking to quit smoking, but unsure how to start, the UNH Employee Clinic has all the right tools to help! Check out the Tobacco Cessation Services tab for more information.

 

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