Think it’s okay to put up with a few hours of someone else’s smoking? Believe us, there is no rule in etiquette books that says you should politely ignore your friend’s cigarette fumes. If anything, it’s their manners — and your health — that are at stake.
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According to Michael F. Roizen, MD, chief wellness officer of the Cleveland Clinic, eight hours of breathing secondhand smoke is roughly equivalent to smoking a pack of cigarettes.
Secondhand smoke is classified as a “known human carcinogen” by several health and environmental agencies in the U.S. and worldwide. According to the American Cancer Society, tobacco smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, more than 250 of which are harmful, and more than 60 of which are known to cause cancer. Even brief exposure to someone else’s smoking can increase the risk of lung cancer in nonsmokers.
To protect your health, avoid areas that are not nonsmoking and ask friends and family to refrain from smoking when around you.
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