Video Explains how second hand smoke cannot cause a person to relapse, but may still pose other risks for former smokers.
Can second hand smoke cause relapse?
Contrary to popular opinion or misconceptions, the risks of second hand smoke exposure are nothing compared to actually smoking yourself. As far as causing a relapse to needing nicotine, it can’t do that. The trace amount of nicotine that can be absorbed from second hand smoke exposure is usually under 1% of what a smoker gets from smoking. Inhaling a puff or even puffing on a lit cigarette without actually inhaling and absorbing nicotine through the oral mucosa does not deliver trace amounts though, it delivers a significantly large dose of nicotine that is fully capable of causing a full-blown relapse.
As far as second hand smoke and nicotine goes, you would have to be in a smoke filled room, non-stop for 100 hours, yes I am saying over 4 days to get the equivalent dose of nicotine delivered to a smoker from one cigarette. This is a unique property of nicotine though. Other chemicals in second hand smoke can reach some pretty toxic levels much quicker than that, in minutes not days.
The side effects felt from being exposed to second hand smoke are from Carbon Monoxide, Hydrogen Cyanide and some other noxious chemicals that can reach levels that are well above OSHA standards for safety. If a non-smoker happens to have a heart condition or an asthmatic or bronchial problem, and exposure to second hand smoke induces an incident on the spot, it would be said by all that the second hand smoke was more dangerous to that non smoker than the first hand smoke was to the smoker him or herself at the time. But rest assured, if the second hand smoke could induce the attack, if that person had smoked him or herself it would have induced a lot earlier and probably more severely. I have to say probably because the second hand smoke exposure may have fatal consequences for the predisposed non-smoker. But again, if second hand smoke did it, if that person were a smoker they would likely have experienced much sooner from their own self induced exposure.
The best way to keep your exposure to nicotine and the 4000 other chemicals and poisons to a bare minimum is to never take another puff!
The following resources explore issues that may pose a risk though when in a situation surrounded by smokers. It is not from a physiological risk but more so from smokers trying to discourage recent quitters from sustaining their quits or current smokers from even starting a quit.
Offers for cigarettes
“No thank you, I can’t have a cigarette”
“I’m trying to quit smoking”
Well meaning offers for cigarettes
“You will never make it, here have a cigarette”
Dealing with people who try to undercut your quit
“Please don’t smoke”