Tobacco-free Homes and Vehicles

Smoking in Homes

The most common secondhand smoke threat to children's health is usually right in their own home. Secondhand smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, 70 of which are cancer causing. Each year, 280 children die from respiratory illnesses caused by secondhand smoke.

All children are susceptible to secondhand smoke; however, infants and young children are extremely susceptible because their lungs are so small. Secondhand smoke exposure can cause SIDS, bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, phlegm, coughing, ear infections, wheezing and an increased number of colds.

Smoking in Vehicles

Opening a vehicle window or vehicle vents will not protect your passengers from the dangers of secondhand smoke.

Thirdhand smoke is tobacco smoke that remains long after the cigarette has been put out. It consists of smoke particles that settle on drapes, carpets, furniture and more.

Smoking in confined spaces, such as a vehicle, increases the intensity of secondhand smoke exposure. Research shows that the level of air pollution in a car caused by cigarette smoke is so severe that breathing it is dangerous for anyone. In fact, smoke concentrations hit levels rated "hazardous" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). For infants and young passengers, secondhand smoke exposure can cause SIDS, bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, phlegm, coughing, ear infections, wheezing and an increased number of colds.

Tobacco-free Home & Vehicle Benefits:

  • The air quality in your home will be cleaner and healthier to inhale for family, pets and guests
  • You will be a more positive role model for your children
  • You will decrease the chance of fire in your home
  • The resale value of your home may be greater
  • The air quality in your vehicle will be cleaner and healthier to inhale for all passengers
  • The resale value of your vehicle may be greater
  • You will be less distracted while driving, decreasing the chance of traffic violations and accidents
  • You will avoid cigarette burn marks on your vehicle upholstery

Tobacco-free Home & Vehicle Tips:

  • If you aren't ready to quit, only use tobacco products outside, away from family,pets and air vents
  • Ask other family members and visitors to not use tobacco products in your home
  • Remove all tobacco products from your home, including lighters and ashtrays
  • Hang a sign on the dashboard or window reminding passengers (and yourself) that tobacco use is not permitted in your vehicle
  • Clean the interior of your vehicle so you aren't tempted to smoke due to the smell
  • Empty your ashtray and fill it with sugar-free candies or change

Creating a tobacco-free home and vehicle will improve the health of your loved ones, your pets, and yourself. By signing the tobacco-free pledge, you will be taking the first step toward a healthier home or vehicle.