LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Aug. 6, 2012) – A study published by PEDIATRICS® found that children living with one or more adults who smoked in the home were absent from school more days per year than children living in a home without people who smoke. The study also showed that children living with two or more adults who smoked in the home also reported more ear infections and chest colds than those living in smoke-free homes.
“As Arkansas parents prepare for children to start school, we want them to be aware how smoking in the home affects their children’s performance and chances of success,” said Dr. Carolyn Dresler, medical director of the Arkansas Department of Health Tobacco Prevention and Cessation Program. “Smoking in the home exposes children to dangerous toxins that can have a short- and long-term negative impact on their health, school performance, and social and intellectual growth.”
In addition to increased ear infections and chest colds, long-term effects of tobacco smoke exposure can include cognitive impairment, reduced lung function and deficits in reading, math and visiospacial reasoning. More than 14 percent in the study, representing 2.6 million children, lived with at least one resident who smoked in the home.
The Arkansas Tobacco Quitline provides a free service for parents who want to quit tobacco and create a smoke-free home. Free counseling with a trained Quit Coach® and nicotine replacement therapy medications are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW. For more information about the Quitline, visit stampoutsmoking.com, or to read the full PEDIATRICS study, visit stampoutsmoking.com/news.
About the Arkansas Tobacco Prevention and Cessation Program
The Tobacco Prevention and Cessation Program is a program of the Arkansas Department of Health. It funds the state tobacco Quitline, the Stamp Out Smoking media and public education campaign and tobacco control coalitions across the state.
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Arkansas Department of Health