As the coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the globe, scientists are looking into any factors that may exacerbate the spread of the virus and the illness it causes. We know that the immunocompromised and the elderly are at higher risk, but researchers are starting to turn their attention to another potential risk factor: vaping.
We don’t know much about a possible link between the novel coronavirus and vaping — there hasn’t been enough time to design reliable studies and collect data. But medical expertise and common sense can tell us a little bit about the association, so I spoke to three doctors to get the lowdown: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention vaccine provider Dr. Michael Hall, tobacco-cessation specialist Dr. Elisa Tong and Yale Medicine pulmonologist Dr. Stephen Baldassarri. Read on for everything you need to know about a potential link between the novel coronavirus and vaping.
Smokers and Vapers May Be at Greater Risk for Covid-19
Tobacco and marijuana products damage lungs, where the virus does its harm. Health officials are urging people to quit, and temporary sales bans are even being discussed.
Anxious times — like a pandemic — can lead to unhealthy but self-soothing habits, whether it’s reaching for a bag of potato chips, more chocolate or another glass of wine. But some stress-reducing behaviors are alarming to medical experts right now — namely vaping and smoking of tobacco or marijuana.
”Quitting during this pandemic could not only save your life, but by preventing the need for your treatment in a hospital, you might also save someone else’s life,” said Dr. Jonathan Winickoff, director of pediatric research at the Tobacco Research and Treatment Center at Massachusetts General Hospital.