Tobacco use affects all Nunavummiut and the land around us. Laws around tobacco use are designed to protect our community members, especially children and youth. Explore this section to learn more.
Second-hand smoke is smoke you do not choose to breathe in. It happens when you breathe in smoke that a smoker breathes out. It also happens when you breathe in smoke from a burning cigarette, cigar or pipe.
Breathing in this smoke is just like smoking – and is just as dangerous. There is no safe amount of second-hand smoke.
Many of the particles in second-hand smoke stay in the air for hours.
Some of the poisons also stick to furniture, clothing and even on people. This is called third-hand smoke.
Health effects of second-hand smoke in babies and children:
- Ear infections
- Asthma attacks
- Breathing problems (such as coughing, sneezing, shortness of breath)
- Lung infections (such as bronchitis, pneumonia)
- Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
- Low birth weight (baby born too small)
Health effects of second-hand smoke in adults:
- Lung cancer
- Cardiovascular disease (stroke, heart failure, heart disease)
- Lung infections
- Breast cancer
- Hearing loss
- Dementia (memory loss)
The best way to protect people you love from second-hand smoke is to:
- Step outside your home to smoke – at least nine big steps – before you light up.
- Stop smoking in vehicles, and in areas around playgrounds and workplaces.
- Do not smoke when your baby is in your amauti.
- Clean house. Get rid of the smoky smell by sprinkling baking soda on carpets and upholstery, then vacuuming it up in the morning. Use a cup of vinegar in a bucket of warm water with two tablespoons of dish soap to wash your walls.
- Let the house breathe. If the weather allows it, open all your doors and windows and let the house air out.
- Load up the laundry. Wash all your clothes, blankets, and furniture covers in the washing machine. In addition to laundry soap, use a cup of white vinegar to get rid of the smoke smell.
- Let everyone know. Tell visitors that your home is now smoke-free and to only smoke outside.