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Third's the Harm

Scott LaFee on

Firsthand smoke includes the fumes tobacco users inhale. Secondhand smoke is exhaled smoke, plus substances emanating from burning tobacco. Thirdhand smoke is secondhand smoke that lingers invisibly after the smoker is gone. It also can accumulate on the surface of objects; it ages over time; and it becomes progressively more toxic.

A new study, reported by STAT, finds that smokers who enter nonsmoking venues, from movie theaters and restaurants to rental cars, are capable of bringing in a large amount of cigarette residue that can affect air quality for extended periods.

Researchers assessed the air quality of theaters and noted a spike in the concentration of chemicals found in cigarette smoke after moviegoers sat down for screenings. The scientists found the gas emissions were akin to being exposed to secondhand smoke from 1 to 10 cigarettes for an hour, and nicotine was the most abundant substance they found.

Get Me That, Stat!

Stricter opioid prescription laws appear to curb opioid misuse. In July 2018, Florida enacted a law limiting non-chronic pain opioid prescriptions to a three-day supply, which could be extended to one week for exceptions.

Looking at data from January 2015 to March 2019, researchers found the rate of new patients prescribed opioids dropped from 5.5 per 100,000 people per month before the new law to 4.6 per 100,000 people per month after. The average prescription length declined a full day to 4.2 days.

 

Counts

1 in 7: Ratio of children in the U.S. who are diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or another learning disability.

28: Estimated number of nurses worldwide, in millions.

6: Estimated number of additional nurses needed to meet worldwide demand, in millions.

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Copyright 2020 Creators Syndicate Inc.
 

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