When the Covid-19 epidemic had just begun, we defended ourselves against the virus in a lot of ways: we brewed tea with ginger and lemon and swallowed huge doses of vitamins. At the same time, smokers were calmed — on the Internet, the information that smoking protects against Covid spread rapidly.
But in almost two years, we have studied the virus well, having gained knowledge about both prevention and treatment. How do bad habits affect the risk of contracting and the course of COVID-19? Let’s discuss it in this article.
It should be also mentioned that we are mainly talking about bad habits but not addiction. If you noticed that you cannot control your alcohol consumption, easily get drunk and can’t have even a week alcohol break, better find a free drugs rehabilitation center and get a consultation. Together with the specialists, you’ll be able to discuss the risks of getting an alcohol addiction, ways of prevention, and a free drug treatment program.
What is the latest evidence on the risk of coronavirus infection among smokers?
At the beginning of the pandemic, there were indeed persistent rumors that smokers were at a lower risk of infection. However, there have been no large-scale studies to verify this claim. According to the doctors’ observation, the delta strain prevailing in the world now infects everyone equally – both smokers and non-smokers. It would be naive to expect that tobacco smoke would protect your body from the virus.
How does COVID-19 progress in smokers?
It largely depends on whether the patient has any background pathology. If a smoker has problems directly related to this habit (for example, COPD), then the infection will be more severe for him than for the same person, but without this pathology.
Can I drink alcohol with COVID-19? How can this affect the course of the disease?
With COVID-19, the dose spread between therapeutic and toxic is very small. When ethanol is metabolized in the body, first acetic aldehyde is sequentially formed, and then acetic acid. It is the aldehyde that is the “culprit” of all symptoms characteristic of a hangover syndrome.
Specifically, with COVID-19, the saddest and most dangerous of all the consequences of alcohol intake and the subsequent hangover is that the body becomes dehydrated and after a while blood thickens. This means that the risk of thrombosis is increasing.
The SARS-CoV-2 virus itself infects the endothelium (inner lining) of the vessels, this also leads to the formation of blood clots. Drinking alcohol can intensify this process and aggravate the course of the disease, up to the formation of blood clots, leading to a fatal result.
In addition, almost all moderate to severe forms of COVID-19 are accompanied by liver damage. But the liver is also one of the target organs for alcohol abuse. That is, alcohol increases the liver problems already existing with COVID-19. Finally, taking many drugs, in particular antibiotics, is also incompatible with alcohol.
Are there any restrictions on alcohol consumption before and after COVID-19 vaccination?
Drinking alcohol is stressful for the body. Any stress reaction during the vaccination process can directly affect its outcome, that is, the development of a sufficient and adequate immune response.
Also, the flu-like syndrome, which sometimes occurs after vaccination, in combination with a hangover syndrome, is not a so-so combination. So the recommendations to abstain from alcohol for a few days before and after vaccination are fully justified.
Moreover, the risk of developing alcoholism got higher after the pandemic started, as the researchers among free drug and alcohol classes say. Due to boredom, increased stress, and mass panic, people tend to drink more alcohol and develop an addiction quite easily.
Do I need to comply with restrictions on alcohol consumption after suffering COVID-19?
After severe COVID-19, patients often suffer from many organs and systems of the body. The post-covid syndrome, which occurs in 30-40% even after mild cases, is far from a harmless condition. According to experts, up to 70% of patients with post-covid syndrome are faced with impaired lung function, including shortness of breath, poor oxygen saturation. The changes that can be seen during instrumental examinations, for example, on CT scans, remain for a long time, and sometimes even progress. About 20-25% of people with the post-covid syndrome are faced with heart damage – damage to its membrane or myocardium (heart muscle). Every second has a vascular lesion. One in three has gastrointestinal disorders, including liver and pancreas problems.
Therefore, what kind of alcohol can we talk about in such patients? Of course, you should not aggravate the already difficult condition of the body, interfere with its recovery.
What are some of the symptoms that indicate that post covid syndrome has affected the psyche?
Post-Covid can have a negative impact not only on physical health. Post-Covid syndrome – symptoms and signs that can occur during illness or after recovery from coronavirus and persist for a long period.
Symptoms of Post-Covid syndrome in mental health:
- disturbed sleep, memory, concentration and confusion of thoughts;
- general anxiety, which can arise not only due to recovery from coronavirus but also from isolation and quarantine;
- mood changes, depression, negative and suicidal thoughts;
- The curvature of smell, visual, auditory, and tactile hallucinations.
Long-term symptoms of Long COVID (long-term COVID) last 12 weeks or longer and are experienced differently in subjective ways by people who have had coronavirus infection. Some symptoms occur in waves and some are permanent.
According to the results of studies of long-term COVID, fatigue, headaches, shortness of breath, anosmia (loss of smell), muscle weakness, low temperature, cognitive dysfunction, psychological and social maladjustment of varying degrees, exacerbation of chronic diseases stand out from a wide range of symptoms.
An unexpected consequence could be developing alcohol addiction. So in a case you noticed that since covid you started drinking more alcohol, talk to a doctor in free alcohol rehab or find a free drug guide to know more about addictions.
The main reasons for the occurrence of post-Covid symptoms are disorders caused by a viral disease:
- damage to organ tissue (cells of the lungs, heart, blood vessels, brain, kidneys, stomach and intestines);
- thrombus formation (inflammation of the lining of blood vessels, blood clotting disorders);
- damage to brain cells and large nerves;
- autoimmune reactions due to an excessive immune response.