Smoking and vaping are banned in workplaces, restaurants, and other public places. The bans are introduced to prevent health problems related to passive smokers and vapers. But indoor use of tobacco cigarettes and electronic alternatives has one more drawback – nicotine build-up and smell. Is it possible to minimize the damage to your house? And what of these two habits is safer for the home? Let’s figure out.
What is The Nature of Damage?
Everyone, including smokers, knows that puffing on a cigarette inside the house is not a good idea. It leaves an unpleasant smell and leads to yellowish stains on the walls. But some people have a mistaken belief that if they smoke near the window and regularly ventilate the house, they don’t harm their houses. The same belief is common for vapers.
Well, maybe this tactic helps to refresh the air and get rid of some part of the secondhand smoke and vapor from a thc pen. But nicotine and other chemicals cling to clothes, curtains, furniture, floor, and walls. These left-overs are called third-hand smoke/vapor.
Vapor also leaves a residue as most e-liquids contain nicotine. However, it doesn’t create a bad smell as they are usually flavored. Also, it doesn’t contain tar which contributes to pollution.
A thc oil pen has one more advantage over a tobacco cigarette, not to mention the health one. The majority of the smoke from a cigarette is not inhaled by the smoker but is released into the air. During vaping, vapor is created only when you inhale. So, the damage is less.
Smoking vs. Vaping Indoors – What Does Science Say?
A 2018 study found out that nicotine and other chemicals exhaled by vapers can move through air vents and leave residue on surfaces even in neighborhood locations.
Researchers tracked e-cig vapor exhaled in a vape shop (in a California mall) and transferred through ventilation to a shop next door. They found nicotine, nitrosamines, and alkaloids in the towels (made of different fabrics) in the adjacent room after short-term (1-8 days) and long-term (1-3 months) exposures. It was noted that the concentrations grew over time. But the lead researcher Careen Khachatoorian of the University of California at Riverside added that little is known about what is in exhaled vapor and what settles on surfaces.
But what is actually safer for your house – a conventional cigarette or a thc vape pen? The size of vapor clouds produced by e-cigarettes, especially when a sub-ohm type is used, is remarkable. And taken into account the above-mentioned findings, can we suppose that e-vapor leaves as much residue as tobacco smoke on your household items? Scientist Derek Bush and Maciej Goniewicz from Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY, say “No”.
In 2015, they conducted a pilot study on nicotine residues. The researchers measured the levels of nicotine in households of 8 e-cig users, 6 tobacco cigarette smokers, and 8 non-users of nicotine-containing products. The samples were taken from the floors, windows, and walls.
It’s not surprising that nicotine was found in every smoker’s house. As for the vapers’ households, only half of them had detectable amounts of nicotine. And nicotine levels in traditional smokers’ homes were significantly higher than those found in e-cig users’ homes.
But what was unexpected, traces of nicotine were found in half of the houses of non-users of nicotine-containing products. And the levels of nicotine in homes of vapers and non-users didn’t differ much.
How to Reduce the Impact of Indoor Smoking and Vaping?
Here’re some tips on keeping your house clean from secondhand and thirdhand smoke and vapor:
- If someone smokes or vapes indoors, ask them to do that in a room with proper ventilation or near an open window.
- Incense sticks are helpful in overpowering bad smell. If you don’t have any and want to neutralize the tobacco smell, put small bowls with vinegar or coffee (either ground or beans) in all the rooms. These products are known as natural odor absorbers.
- Open the windows to refresh the air every day.
- Regularly wash the curtains.
- To remove the residue from the furniture, wipe them well using water with green soap.
- Wipe the walls at least once a week to prevent strong stains and smell. You can use pure 20% vinegar or special cleaning products like Mr. Clean Magic Eraser or Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap.
- Long-term smoking or vaping leaves stubborn stains on the walls. When washing and scrubbing can’t make your wall look like new, the only way to remove it completely is repainting your walls. Note, that nicotine has an oily residue that inhibits the adhesion of paint. So, before painting, wash the walls.
By the way, ex-smokers who have switched to thc vape say that they do less frequent wall cleaning because vaping takes more time to pollute them.
How to Keep a Smoke-Free Home?
As you see, it’s possible to reduce the effects of smoking and vaping on your living place. But you can’t nullify them until you quit or start doing it outside. And if you live with children or a person with some respiratory illness, the best thing to do is to smoke or vape outside. Here’s how you can make your home a smoke-free territory.
- Create a comfortable outside smoking/vaping area for yourself and your visitors. If you have guests, tell them that they can’t do that inside the house.
- Clean your house from smoking paraphernalia, such as ashtrays and lighters. Put it in a smoking area. Thus, you’ll need to go outside whenever you want to light up.
- Post no-smoking/no-vaping signs to remind your visitors that it is not welcome in your house.
- Bad weather can stop you from going outside. But even one smoke/vape break can pollute the rest of the house, even if you’re in a room with the door closed.
- Keep an umbrella near the door. It will encourage you to go outside when the weather is nasty.