Why should you stop smoking during COVID-19?

After the government highlighted the risks for COVID-19 smokers, the Smoking and Health Activities (ASH) joined health professionals to call smokers to #QuitforCovid.

Smoking and COVID-19

It is especially important to take steps to protect and improve your health during a coronavirus pandemic.

Smoking damages the lungs and respiratory tract and damages the immune system, reducing your ability to fight infection. Smoking is also very harmful to the cardiovascular system (the blood vessels that carry blood to your heart and body), which has many negative health effects, including an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

COVID-19 is a disease caused by a respiratory virus called SARS-CoV-2. People who smoke are generally at risk for respiratory infections and more severe symptoms after infection.

Quitting smoking will bring immediate benefits to your respiratory and cardiovascular health, including if you have an existing smoking-related illness. In general, it will also help reduce the use of NHS services.

This echoes the advice of the Chief Medical Officer:

“If you’re going to quit smoking, this is a very good time to do it.”

Chief physician