Third hand smoke destroys liver and brain health that worsens over time

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third-hand-smoke(NaturalHealth365) Most of us have heard of second hand smoke, but have you heard of third hand smoke? If not, it’s time to educate yourself about it, because research out of the University of California, Riverside has determined that it can be extremely harmful to health.

Third hand smoke (THS) is created when smoke emanating from lit cigarettes as well as exhaled cigarette smoke transfers onto surfaces including home items, clothing and the human body. Research is now showing that exposure to it can cause a range of health problems including liver damage, lung damage, hyperactivity and wound-healing complications.

Exposure to third hand smoke can harm the liver and brain in just one month

The goal of the University of California, Riverside study was to find out just what health effects are caused by third hand smoke and how long it takes for onset. The researchers determined that health problems resulting from third hand smoke can come on as quickly as one month following exposure, and this effect only gets worse with time.

For the study, researchers set up a system that closely mimicked what happens when humans are exposed to THS. The effect of this exposure was tracked and studied in terms of 24 key health biomarkers for disease, cellular damage as well as brain and liver tissues.

After two months, even more molecular damage was tracked. At four to six months, the damage was even worse. The mice studied also started showed insulin resistance and immune system fatigue from long-term THS exposure.

The mice became less social than non-exposed mice and eventually showed signs of addiction to cigarettes. The study results were published in a Portland Press journal called Clinical Science.

Effects of smoking and third hand smoke cause a cascade of health problems

The effects of THS to the liver and to the brain are the most troubling. The liver is key in detoxifying the body and keeping it healthy. When it is not functioning optimally, the cell damage caused by THS and other toxins can be exponentially worse. Brain and nervous system health is crucial to just about every bodily function.

Third hand smoke just could be more insidious than the other forms of cigarette smoke in that it is silent and invisible. People handling items that have been contaminated with THS may not be aware they are even being exposed.

And, while THS can be regulated or avoided in one’s own home, it could be anywhere, including countertops, rental car interiors, hotel rooms and other environments where smokers have been.

Negative health effects of smoking even worse than we thought

THS has also been shown to be highly resilient, remaining on surfaces for years. They are even resistant to the strongest cleansing agents. Over time, they can react to ambient air and turn into carcinogenic chemicals. Children are even more vulnerable than adults to THS.

The negative effects of smoking are well known, but this new information takes the risk to a new level. Share this information with smokers and non-smokers alike.

Sources for this article include:

EurekAlert.org

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