Third Hand Smoke?

I just read a story on third hand smoke and its effects upon mice subjected to it. Just wow. See here:

According to the study third hand smoke is pretty much a residual buildup of the toxins from smoke, that gets all over everything in the general vicinity of smokers. This crud and I quote “ages over time and becomes progressively more toxic.”  I was a pack a day smoker for about 25 years. I had no real idea how nasty tobacco is until long after I had quit. I know full well about this toxic crud that gets all over everything, I don’t know how many times I had to clean the glass in my vehicles because of the stuff. It permeates everything in smokers homes and cars as well as bars or other gathering places that are frequented by smokers. 

This nasty grungy crud is a long way from the actual smoke itself, and I am flabbergasted by the results of the study. The mice that were subjected to this toxic crud were studied and the result?  “We found significant damage occurs in the liver and lung. Wounds in these mice took longer to heal. Further, these mice displayed hyperactivity.”

Well, that doesn’t sound so bad right? Now think about this: “Third-hand smoke is a potential health threat to children, spouses of smokers and workers in environments where smoking is, or has been, allowed. Contamination of the homes of smokers by third-hand smoke is high, both on surfaces and in dust, including children’s bedrooms. Re-emission of nicotine from contaminated indoor surfaces in these households can lead to nicotine exposure levels similar to that of smoking. Third-hand smoke, which contains strong carcinogens, has been found to persist in houses, apartments and hotel rooms after smokers move out.” Just wow! 

They also found that mice who were exposed “showed alterations in multiple organ systems and excreted levels of a tobacco-specific carcinogen similar to those found in children exposed to second-hand smoke (and consequently to third-hand smoke.)”  More wow.

A few more findings: 


  • In the liver, third-hand smoke was found to increase lipid levels and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, a precursor to cirrhosis and cancer and a potential contributor to cardiovascular disease.
  • In the lungs, third-hand smoke was found to simulate excess collagen production and high levels of inflammatory cytokines (small proteins involved in cell signaling), suggesting propensity for fibrosis with implications for inflammation-induced diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma.
  • In wounded skin, healing in mice exposed to third-hand smoke showed many characteristics of the kind of poor healing observed in human smokers who have gone through surgery. (mentioned earlier)
  • Finally, in behavioral tests the mice exposed to third-hand smoke showed hyperactivity. (which was also already mentioned)


My youngest son has a friend in school, they will take turns at spending the night either here or over there, and that’s great. Kids should get out to socialize and experience life through other peoples perspectives. Problem is their house tends to just stink of nasty ass smoke. I mean it hits you like a ton of bricks when you walk in. My sons first priority when he gets home from one of these trips is to take a shower and run the clothes through the wash, to get this foul stench out of his hair and clothing. I think I may have just made a decision about him staying over there anymore. He isn’t going to like it. But he can read, he is a smart kid, and I hope he sees what I see here.


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