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The odors and chemicals associated with second hand smoke come from two sources, according to Cancer.org. Did you know that smoke from a lit pipe, cigarette, or other burning tobacco product is known as sidestream smoke? The smoke that is exhaled from the mouth or nostrils of a smoker is called mainstream smoke.
Unfortunately, it doesn't matter which kind of second hand smoke you encounter, the "passive smoker" (or second hand smoker) encounters more than 4,000 chemicals. At least 60 of these are known to cause cancer.
This issue is complicated by "multipliers" of second hand smoke. Those who work in bars, nightclubs, and other environments where smoking is still permitted absorb far more odors and chemicals from tobac10 smokers, who all smoke two cigarettes each. The employees absorb the smoke of 20 cigarettes! This noticeable reduction in air quality can lead to respiratory problems beyond simple discomfort; some experts say environments lacking in Healthy Air can actually lead to reduced lung function!
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|