Sunday, November 24, 2019

Stand Up for Smoke-Free Schools Essays

Stand Up for Smoke-Free Schools Essays Stand Up for Smoke-Free Schools Essay Stand Up for Smoke-Free Schools Essay Everyone knows the amount of danger that smoking poses to the health of both the smokers and the people that surround them. Everyone knows that after a decade or so of smoking, a smoker’s lung would look totally different from a nonsmoker’s lung.   Everyone knows that a smoker is susceptible to various diseases and illness caused by smoking.   This paper will argue for smoke-free schools not for the obvious reasons that smoking causes to a smoker’s health but for the bad effects that smoking also brings to its other victims- the nonsmokers.   This paper will delve into results of some of the studies that shows the terrible consequences that smoking has on people’s- smokers’ and nonsmokers’- health; these will serve as proofs to strengthen the argument for 100% smoke-free schools. While vast amounts of studies had already confirmed the life-threatening effects of smoking to the smoker’s health, an increasing number of researches are also establishing the link between secondhand smoking and various diseases that it brings to nonsmokers.   Secondhand smoke, also known as passive smoking or involuntary smoking, is a term used to define â€Å"a mixture of smoke breathed out by the smoker (mainstream smoke) and smoke released from the lit cigarette (sidestream smoke) (â€Å"Secondhand Smoke Hazards†).   Secondhand smoke contains carcinogenic and toxic substances such as nicotine, ammonia, hydrogen cyanide, carbon monoxide, and formaldehyde, which are sometimes in greater concentration than those found in the smoke inhaled by the smoker (â€Å"Secondhand Smoke Hazards†).   It has been linked to various to a variety of cancers, cardiovascular and cerebral diseases, respiratory diseases, as well as reproductive and developmental effects (â €Å"Secondhand Smoke Hazards†).   These findings are supported by an article published by the Medical College of Wisconsin, stating that â€Å"each year, an estimated 3,000 lung cancer deaths and 62,000 deaths from coronary heart disease in adult nonsmokers are attributed to secondhand smoke† (â€Å"CDC Releases Data on Smoking Prevalence, Attitudes†). These are just some of the statistics that show how grave the effects of smoking are both to the smoking and nonsmoking public. Many people fall victim to passive smoking consciously and unconsciously.   Studies have established the dangers of secondhand smoking.   This is particularly true especially in the case of children whose lungs are smaller and more delicate than adults’. They are, thus, more seriously affected by the tobacco smoke and its chemicals. According to â€Å"The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke,† a report done by the Surgeon General of the US Department of Health and Human Services, on average, children are exposed to more secondhand smoke than nonsmoking adults.   This is probably because adults are freer to choose whether to be or not to be with smokers, whereas children have to endure the company of their smoking parents or friends. Aside from the obvious health hazards that smoking brings to children, some studies have also shown that smoking and secondhand smoke affect children’s development and behavior. A new study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, illustrates how secondhand smoke could interfere with academic performance (Collins).   Secondhand smoke was said to lead to hyperactivity, reduced attentions span, as well as reduced language skills and academic achievement. Meanwhile, another research shows how and extended exposure to secondhand smoke increases the risk of dementia.   According to a study done by the American Academy of neurology, â€Å"people with [] a high lifetime or exposure to secondhand smoke were nearly two and a half times as likely to develop dementia [compared with] those with no secondhand exposure (â€Å"Secondhand Smoke Increases the Risk of Dementia†).   These results boost the increasing amount of data against smoking and secondhand smoke. With all of these evidences pointing to the health and developmental threats that smoking and secondhand smoke bring to children in particular, now is the time to start the end of smoking in pubic areas, including schools and daycare centers.   Dr. Richard Carmona, the surgeon general of the US Department of Health and Human Services, believes that the only way to protect one’s self as well as his/her loved ones is through 100% smoke-free environments (â€Å"The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke†).   The separation of smoking and nonsmoking areas in most public places, which can lessen the exposure of nonsmokers to secondhand smoke, prove to be inadequate.   This is because these areas still share the same ventilation systems, which means that the air that the smokers exhale can still find its way into the nonsmokers particularly in small and enclosed quarters. With this in mind, the US Department of Health and Human Services launched Healthy People 2010, â€Å"a comprehensive, nationwide health promotion and disease-prevention agenda designed to help improve the health of all people in the United States during the first decade of the 21st century† (â€Å"The Hazards of Secondhand Smoke†).   This campaign aims to increase people’s awareness of the hazardous effects of smoking as well as to reduce the smoking population in the United States.   It also seeks to encourage the passing of laws among the different states banning smoking in public places such as airports, terminals, hospitals, and schools and universities.   This crusade is met by enthusiasm as shown in a report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stating that â€Å"high levels of public support exist, even among smokers, for smoke-free policies in many settings† (â€Å"CDC Releases Data on Smoking Prevalence, Attitudes†). While there are a lot of people and organizations who are in favor of smoke-free environments, there are also some who cannot imagine life without tobacco.   Smokers would say that smoking has also its share of benefits. For one, it causes relaxation and eases tension as well as stress.   Puffing a cigarette can have the same calming effect of a cup of tea or coffee for some.   Those who are pro-smoking bans, on the other hand, would argue that there are other healthier ways of relaxation aside from smoking, such as exercising, yoga, writing, and other artistic activities.   The lifelong harmful effects of smoking are not enough compensation for a moment of relaxation.   Meanwhile, smokers would also assert their right to smoke and to indulge in this kind of vice, saying that smoking is part of their â€Å"needs† as a person. However, other people- whether smokers or nonsmokers- also have the right to breathe clean and fresh air, and this will not be possible as long as there are people who taint the air with their secondhand smoke. Smoke-free environments- particularly daycare centers, schools, and colleges- would prove to be beneficial for everybody not only the children and nonsmokers but even smokers as well.   While it is true that exposure to secondhand smoke is possible anywhere, it wouldn’t hurt to start banning smoking from the place where children spend most of their time: schools.   By starting the good example of not allowing smoking here, the institution is doing the youth a favor of instilling in their minds the benefits of a healthier life without smoke. nbsp;

No comments:

Post a Comment