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Kids have less asthma attacks with indoor smoking bans

Harold Mandel's picture
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Researchers have found that there are less visits to the emergency room by kids for asthma after bans on indoor smoking.


Asthma is a very serious potentially life threatening condition for kids to have to cope with. Bans on indoor smoking can have a positive impact for kids in dealing with this condition.

There are less kid's visits to the emergency room for asthma after bans on indoor smoking

The University of Chicago Medical Center reports there are less kid's visits to the emergency room for asthma after bans on indoor smoking. Researchers say in communities with indoor smoking bans there is a 17 percent decrease in the number of kids who require care for attacks of asthma.

Pediatric allergy expert Christina Ciaccio, MD at the University of Chicago led this study. Dr. Ciaccio investigated 20 metropolitan areas in various parts of the United States that introduced clean indoor air regulations which prohibited smoking in public places such as workplaces, restaurants and hotels. She says that it is shown in this study that just short term exposures of kids to secondhand smoke in public spaces can result in a dramatic impact on exacerbations of asthma.

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There is an improvement in public health from clean indoor air legislation

In this study the researchers counted the number of visits during the three years prior to and the three years after indoor smoking bans were put into effect. Study co-author Theresa Shireman, PhD, who is a professor in the Brown University School of Public Health, says the results of this study have made it clear there is an improvement in public health from clean indoor air legislation.

It has been acknowledged by the researchers that the study only shows that there is an association between indoor smoking bans and a decrease in asthma associated emergency room visits. The results do not prove the indoor smoking bans caused the drop in visits to the emergency room. However, Dr. Shireman said the evidence has strongly suggested it.

This study has been published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. There is an association between legislation banning indoor smoking and visits by kids to the emergency department for exacerbations of asthma. This same type of legislation should be encouraged in localities which presently lack it in order to protect the respiratory health of the kids in those places. Without support for smoke free indoor air the respiratory health of kids is at great risk.