Secondhand Smoke Is Dangerous
According to the U.S. Surgeon General, there is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke. It contains thousands of chemicals, over 70 of which cause cancer. Exposure to secondhand smoke in multi-unit housing or outdoors can be dangerous and unhealthy, especially for children and people with health concerns.
Take a Stand
You can help protect yourself and your loved ones from secondhand smoke by
- Telling Smoke-Free Housing if you are being affected by secondhand smoke drifting into your unit.
- Talking with smokers about the dangers that secondhand smoke poses to you or others. Be specific about how secondhand smoke affects you.
- Contact us to learn more or get help by reporting a concern or question.
Have a Conversation
Asking someone who is smoking near you to change is not easy. Let smokers know that you’re not objecting to the fact that they smoke, but that you prefer they not smoke near you. Be firm but polite. How you say the message is as important as the message itself. Here are some scenarios to help you start the conversation.
Family or Loved Ones
If you have family or loved ones who smoke around you:
- Acknowledge that quitting smoking is hard.
- Tell them you’re concerned about secondhand smoke and how it hurts people’s health, including yours.
- Keep the conversation polite and cool. You’ll get better results from a discussion than an argument.
- Ask them not to smoke in the car or inside the home:
- Even with a window open, smoke can get trapped inside a car or room.
- Suggest “smoke stops” when traveling or a place outside the home away from doors or windows.
- Help them to quit.
- Offer to go for walks with them when they feel a craving coming on.
- Ask them what you can do to be supportive.
- Share the Colorado Quitline number (1-800-QUIT-NOW) with them.
Electronic Smoking Devices Do Not Emit Just Water Vapor
E-cigarettes have been shown to contain chemicals including nicotine, metals, and formaldehyde. Long-term health effects from exposure to vapor have not been fully studied. Refillable electronic smoking devices make it possible to refill cartridges with marijuana and other substances. It’s okay to ask someone not to vape near you or your loved ones. Let those who are vaping know that you do not object to the fact that they vape, but that you’d prefer they not vape near you.