Posted: Sun 5th Apr 2020

Public Health Wales: Smokers with COVID-19 are 14 times more likely to develop severe respiratory disease

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Sunday, Apr 5th, 2020

Emerging evidence from China shows smokers with COVID-19 are 14 times more likely to develop severe respiratory disease.

Smoking tobacco is known to damage the lungs and airways causing a range of severe respiratory problems.

The evidence shows COVID-19 virus attacks the respiratory system, which is why smokers are at greater risk.

A small but highly impactful survey from China finds that smokers with COVID-19 are 14 times more likely to develop severe disease.

Dr Chris Williams, Incident Director for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak response at Public Health Wales, said

“Following publication of a new Chinese study which shows smokers with COVID-19 are 14 times more likely to develop severe disease, we encourage all smokers that want to stop to use NHS Wales’ free Help Me Quit stop smoking advice and phone support service.

Search ‘Help Me Quit’ or call 0800 085 2219 to get started.”

Once smokefree, there are very real health benefits with the body continuing to repair the longer you stay smokefree. The more immediate benefits include:

  • after 48 hours carbon monoxide is eliminated from the body. Lungs start to clear out mucus and other smoking debris
  • after 72 hours breathing becomes easier as bronchial tubes begin to relax
  • after 2 to 12 weeks blood circulation improves, making physical activity like walking and running easier

To help reduce your risk of contracting the virus and developing severe disease from coronavirus, you can use the smokefree app to access advice and support on how you can best stop smoking. Search ‘Smokefree’.

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