We all know that second hand smoke is bad for your health, but a new research study by Brock University in Canada shows that chronic sinus disease is significantly more common among people who have been exposed to second hand smoke than those that have lived in smoke free homes. With over 4,000 compounds and over 50 cancer causing agents in second hand smoke, the research might not sound as surprising at first glance.
In the study, 306 non-smokers diagnosed with chronic sinus disease participated by providing information and access to medical records. The patients had been diagnosed with having at least 12 weeks of chronic inflammation of the sinuses. Over 40 percent of the participants had chronic sinus disease that could be attributed to their exposure levels of second hand smoke.
What the researchers are unsure of, is the details of the connection between second hand smoke exposure and the disease. It is possible that exposure to second hand smoke might increase the likelihood of upper respiratory infections or that it may decrease the body’s immunity to the disease.
Regardless of the underlying connection, the study just adds one more reason to why second hand smoke should be avoided at all costs.
Ramie Tritt, M.D., President, Atlanta ENT