Vaping, smoking increases risk of infections from COVID-19

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(WWLP) — We all know smoking can be harmful to our lungs, but now advisories are being issued that COVID-19 can be an even more serious threat to those who smoke and vape.

Health experts say that vaping can increase the risk of developing serious infections from the COVID-19 by compromising the respiratory system.

22News spoke with the director of Hampden County Tobacco Free Partnership, a program within the Gandara Center, about why the public should keep these risk factors in mind.

“We still have so many unknowns with coronavirus,” said Sara Moriarty. “But the one thing we do know is it attacks your respiratory system so if we have that and we have it coupled with youth using vaping and tobacco products at an alarming rate, that’s a risk that we don’t want our youth taking.”

Moriarty also told 22News that there’s a big concern with stress, related to unemployment and shutdowns. It is making people more likely to resort to habits like smoking and vaping while under quarantine.

There are resources available for those trying to quit, including a 1-800-QUIT-NOW number staffed 24 hours a day as well as a free, eight-week nicotine-free therapy program offered by the state.

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