Help Your Baby Quit Second Hand Smoking


It doesn't take a genius or rocket scientist to know that cigarettes are bad news. Not only are they toxic to the person smoking, but they're bad for everyone around them too. I stopped smoking after a decade and only then realized how strong the smell is, even to the point of being annoyed at people smoking in their cars, when I'm in mine. I didn't know you could even smell it then! Sorry to anyone who had to smell my nasty habit!

We also know that smoking directly around kids kills them, both from cancers, asthma, and SIDS.

But a new study says that even parents who don't smoke can be putting their kids at risk ... by living in an apartment complex that includes smokers.

I know, I know. Just one more thing to worry about, right? But as we all know, smoke isn't contained just by a closed door, and often apartment complexes, especially those with indoor front doors, are going to have gaps under the apartment doors, meaning smoke goes everywhere. Think even ventilation systems, like the building's heat or central air, can be pumping nicotine into your "smoke-free" apartment. Yikes!

I distinctly remember by friend talking about how the house she lived in had been owned previously by an old woman who smoked only in the bathroom for years. When they moved in and painted the walls, the yellow nicotine seeped through the paint. BARF! So this stuff sticks to clothes, furniture, goes under doors, and is just plain nasty.

So obviously, your baby testing positive for nicotine in her blood when you don't even smoke is a BAD thing. The solution suggested is a pretty obvious one, though not a popular one amongst many: Ban smoking in multi-family buildings.

An approximate 7 million people live in apartments, so that's a lot of people potentially exposed to other people's smoke. People argue banning smoking in private homes would be unconstitutional, however:

Courts have ruled that smoking restrictions do not violate the U.S. Constitution and that the government can implement a ban if it has a “reasonable basis” for doing so (such as protecting the health of children). They note that the federal Fair Housing Act does not include a right to smoke.

But like the bar smoking ban, a lot of people propose that it be up to individual managements, but for the low-income, most at-risk groups, up and moving isn't exactly a piece of cake, so is it fair that they suffer as well?

The restaurant smoking ban in my state (and others) made me insanely happy because it was not okay for people to light up around my kid, and it seemed that people had absolutely no concern for children being exposed to their smoke either. Sadly, I even saw a mother take a newborn to the smoking section, and hold the baby on her lap while smoking. Made me sick and angry.

But to ban it in apartments? Honestly, GO FOR IT. We're detaching from the military any day now, because my husband has severe lung issues and can no longer serve on submarines and deal with the pressure. We may end up living in an apartment, and I sure as hell don't want my kids exposed to smoke from OTHER people, and my husband certainly doesn't need it either.

Even when I smoked, I supported bans, because I'm not selfish enough to think that my right to smoke overrode other peoples' right to NOT smoke with me, especially kids.

Do you support a ban on smoking in apartments? Are you worried about your child breathing in second hand smoke?


Image via Json Lind/Flickr

baby health, safety, sids


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beane... beanerbecky

Yes I would support a ban!  We're renting a condo. We moved here in August. Shortly after moving here, I noticed it smelled like smoke a lot. We went on vacation a couple weeks after moving in and all of our stuff smelled so bad. Our clothes had gone straight from the dryer to the suitcase but they still smelled. The suitcases were so stinky it was rubbing off on everything we put in them. That was just from a couple weeks living here. When we got home, we called our property manager to see what could be done. It took a few phone calls but eventually she called us back and said we could break the lease. We had no intention of staying but it's easier when they agree to let you out of the lease.

I realized what was happening. The lady who lived below us was a chain smoker and it was coming through the vents. She actually died two months ago. We're still here. We decided to buy a house instead of finding another place to rent because this could happen anywhere. Our first house fell through and now we're waiting on slow banks so hopefully we'll be out of here soon. I still smell smoke sometimes so I think there's someone else in the building who smokes but it's not as bad since that lady died. If she was still alive we probably would have had to stay with one of our parents while we waited on the house.

baby1... baby1love

I think it is wise to do it. Then again smokers will find ANY way to smoke no matter the ban. My hubby has NEVER smoked in his life but grew up around second hand smoke for 22 years. He is now having syptoms of smokers cough and some that are lung cancer. He coughs all the time has such a hard tme breathing at times. He acts like he himself has smoked all his life but hasn't it's sad he has to suffer even when he has never smoked.

tazdvl tazdvl

That would be nice.

Just2... Just2busymom

Not only that, but I think they need to ban it at children's places/events, such as playgrounds and tball games.  Just because it's outside DOES NOT mean that others can't get a whiff of it.  Especially when it's breezy out.  I get so mad when I see people smoking around kids.

MTNes... MTNester1

I am Christie's mom.  What Christie forgot to mention was that, even though she smoked, she never smoked in the house.  Not in hers.  Not in mine.  She also did not smoke in her auto.  As a nurse I wanted to kill her when I found out she had started smoking.  But now that she has stopped, I am proud she had the self-control to do so.  I just hope her kids don't decide to use this to rebel in their teens like she did.  I guess she had to find something I wasn't cool with.  :)

my4ki... my4kids274

I have to admit that I think this would be a great idea. I grew up around smokers and it never failed that I had constant colds and breathing problems. I was never so happy the day that my Mom ended up so sick with pneumonia that she could not get out of bed to smoke. She was laid up in bed for quite a few days and I actually went and took care of her since she was so sick. After going without a cigarette for a while she went a lit one up and took a drag and ended up in the bathroom throwing up it made her feel so sick. My mom and Dad have not smoked in over ten years and both have been much better off.

Janine Fowler

Definitely. Especially in low-income housing. Not only is there more smoke in those places to begin with, I also think there should be a rule that you can't smoke when on public assistance! When I see moms smoking around their kids it takes everything I've got not to get up in their faces and scream at them.

momto... momtothemax2910

I'm a former smoker and appreciate bans BUT only as long as the obscene taxes are eliminated. I can not in good conscience support banning where people are allowed to smoke when the taxes are so obscenely high and contribute to my daily life. If we're going to live off the taxes from cigarettes then smokers should be allowed to smoke somewhere.

Shanin22 Shanin22

Every apartment complex I've lived in bans smoking inside the residence (mostly because it's hard to get the smell out for the next resident). Yet place after place I've had multiple neighbors who smoke inside they're apartment. If you think a ban is going to stop people from smoking in the complex, you're kidding yourself. And honestly it's quite hard for the managers to prove that a person is smoking or enforce these rules. Most people only get caught when they move out because of the smell and then lose they're deposit for the cost of painting walls and replacing carpet.

Unfortunately theres a lot about multi-family living that isn't desirable or healthy.... that's the cost of cheaper rent. Is it right or fair? No, but it's also not easily changed. If you have health issues that make it hard to be around smokers, you're better off trying to rent a house if possible.

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