Secondhand smoke is a mixture of two forms of tobacco smoke:
Tobacco smoke is a toxic mix of more than 7,000 chemicals. Many of these chemicals are poisonous and reach every organ in your body.
You expose those around you to secondhand smoke when you smoke in the home, cars, the workplace, bars, and restaurants. Help the health of those you love by quitting tobacco.
Secondhand smoke is responsible for thousands of deaths. Breathing even a little of it can be dangerous:
Secondhand smoke causes many of the same health effects as smoking cigarettes.
Sitting in a smoky bar or a car with someone who is smoking raises your odds of a heart attack. Inhaling secondhand smoke causes:
Tobacco smoke affects pets. Making your home smoke-free is one of the most loving things you can do for your pets.
Any amount of secondhand smoke is harmful to both humans and pets.
If you live with a Veteran who smokes, simply having them smoke in a separate room does not protect you and others.
Chemicals from tobacco smoke stay in a room even after the person is done smoking and can get in to fabrics (couches and rugs). These chemicals can also spread through the air to places outside of the room. Exposure isn't just limited to buildings. Exposure is much higher in vehicles, even with the windows down.
The best way to prevent secondhand smoke is to encourage and help the person who smokes to quit.
If you smoke, the sooner you quit, the sooner you stop exposing those around you to secondhand smoke.
Contact the nearest VA health care facility to schedule an appointment with your health care provider about tobacco cessation counseling, medication and other resources. You can also call the VA smoking quitline at 1-855-QUIT-VET (1-855-784-8838) to speak with a tobacco cessation counselor.
To protect those around you when you smoke: