Children who live in households where one or more parents smoke miss more school days than children who live in smoke-free households.
The US study found that in homes with one smoker, children aged 6 to 11 were absent from school an average of four days per year. If the child lived with two smokers, they missed an additional half day a year on average, but children who were not exposed to second hand smoke at home, missed an average of 3 days per year. While it may not seem significant, it does represent an increase of 25% of school days missed in children who lived with smokers, than those who did not.
Of the nearly 3100 families studied, researchers found that where second hand smoke was a factor, children suffered from more ear infections and chest colds. They also noted that, as well as the health effects, there were also financial implications as parents may need to miss work in order to care for their ill child.
Researchers are hoping that this information will provide parents with another incentive to quit smoking.
Source: Pediatrics Online September 5, 2011
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