- What do I need to know about quitting?
- Why should I quit?
- When smokers quit — what are the benefits over time?
- Immediate rewards of quitting
- Social acceptance
- Health of others
- Setting an example
- Help with the mental part of addiction
- Help with the physical part of addiction
- What are the types of nicotine replacement therapy?
- Prescription drugs
- Other methods of quitting
- A word about quitting success rates
- How to quit
- Some special concerns
- To learn more
Health of others
Smoking not only harms your health but it hurts the health of those around you. Exposure to secondhand smoke (also called environmental tobacco smoke or passive smoking) includes exhaled smoke as well as smoke from burning cigarettes.
Studies have shown that secondhand smoke causes thousands of deaths each year from lung cancer in healthy non-smokers.
If a mother smokes, there is a higher risk of her baby developing asthma in childhood, especially if she smoked while she was pregnant. Women who smoke during pregnancy are more likely to have low-birth weight infants.
Babies and children raised in a household where there is smoking have more ear infections, colds, bronchitis, and problems with breathing than children in non-smoking families. Secondhand smoke is linked to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and slow lung growth in children. Secondhand smoke can also cause eye irritation, headaches, nausea, and dizziness.
Last Medical Review: 10/04/2012
Last Revised: 09/09/2013