My ex-wife’s new partner smokes, and I’m worried about the effects of passive smoking on my children. How serious is the risk? Liam
DALEEN TOTTEN REPLIES: Exposure to cigarette smoke is harmful to children and has been linked to a number of problems, including glue ear, asthma, infections and even some childhood cancers. Let’s hope that your ex-wife will ask her partner not to smoke in the same room or car as the children. If she’s a non-smoker herself, she will probably want to encourage him to quit, or at least not to smoke at all in the house. Have a tactful word with her. I have seen an acupuncturist placing a small acupuncture ‘spiral’ on a friend of mine’s ear and she never touched a cigarette again!