Thirdhand smoke is a toxic residue that sticks to surfaces and objects. People come into contact with thirdhand smoke when their skin touches a surface where thirdhand smoke has collected, when they breathe in thirdhand smoke chemicals that are in the air, and when they swallow residue that are on objects that they put in their mouths. Indoor environments where tobacco has been smoked can contain thirdhand smoke that will linger indoors for a long time – months to years.
On this page, you will find scientific information and first-hand accounts about preventing or avoiding exposure to thirdhand smoke pollution in houses, apartments/condos, hotels, and more. You can find communication strategies for interacting with realtors, apartment managers, and hotel staff. You can also read about your right to avoid places with thirdhand smoke pollution.
Do you live in California and have medical conditions made worse by from tobacco smoke intrusion? If you live in multiunit housing, you may be able to get help from California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act.Read More
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A recent study from San Diego State University suggests that nicotine on the hands of children is one of the most effective ways to measure children’s thirdhand smoke exposure over time and in different environments. In collaboration with colleagues at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, the researchers
56 Million Americans Don’t Know They’re Exposed to Tobacco Smoke – Thirdhand Smoke Could be to Blame
Over half of Americans who don’t smoke are exposed to tobacco, but only one-third are aware of it, according to a recent University of Florida study.
A new study from thirdhand smoke researchers from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory shows that thirdhand smoke chemicals that settle into surfaces do not stay there, but re-enter the air, sometimes transforming into new types of contaminants. In this study, the researchers evaluated the effects of ozonation, a common cleaning method, on smoke-exposed carpet.
As Germany plans to ban smoking in cars with children or pregnant women, the German newspaper, Die Zeit, asked experts to weigh in on the forthcoming policy. The experts concluded that this policy does not go far enough and advised caution, especially for children, due to long-term risks posed by thirdhand smoke exposure (known as cold smoke exposure in Germany). Read the full story to answer the question, “Does Cold Smoke Make You Sick?”
This study investigated the chemicals in JUUL pods, looking at the impact of electronic cigarette use on the users and the surrounding environment.
Tobacco smoke contains thousands of chemicals that break down and interact with the environment. Scientists have developed sensitive tests1 using those chemical markers that can detect thirdhand smoke chemicals in the air, in house dust, on surfaces of indoor environments, and on people. However, these tests are expensive to conduct and few are available outside of university laboratories available at this time.
A recent study by Thirdhand Smoke Resource Center Consortium member Melinda Mahabee-Gittens and colleagues investigated if hand nicotine levels can be used as an indicator of second- and thirdhand smoke exposure in children’s environments.