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But smoking cannabis with the crowds could increase the risk of getting sick. This is more true than ever. Sharing a joint with someone can potentially transfer conditions from the common cold to the flu and others. In other words, the days of puff, puff, pass are over, if for no other reason than to contain the spread of COVID-19.
Legalizing marijuana appears to be helping end the long-standing trend of the communal smoking circle. There are now a variety of cannabis products sold in pharmacies in the United States. Food, beverages, and topical products can be enjoyed without sharing body fluids with others.
However, this does not mean that people who wish to smoke cannabis will be excluded. Custom-sized vape pens, flowers, and pre-rolls are ways for cannabis users to keep the smoking tradition alive.
Legal cannabis dispensaries in the United States are increasingly serving individual weed users in the same way that alcohol traffickers serve their customers. After all, nobody drinks a beer these days. Given that coronavirus cases in the US had topped 12 million by the end of November, cannabis should be no different.
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Of course, just because people refuse to share their weeds doesn’t mean they won’t get the virus. A study published this summer by the University of Western Australia shows a correlation between cannabis use and COVID-19 infection rates. Most of the link, however, has more to do with smoking in general than cannabis alone. “Cannabis combines tobacco as a SARS2-CoV-2 risk factor,” the researchers found.
A recent study shows that smoking cannabis excessively puts people at risk for COVID-19 as well. Again, these results are more about how marijuana smoke can weaken the lungs and make a person more susceptible to the virus than that the herb is a risk factor. The researchers found that “Heavy problematic cannabis use may increase the likelihood of hospitalization for COVID-19 respiratory complications”.
All in all, it is advisable not to smoke weeds with friends and family during the holiday season. For some, not smoking at all might be an option. Instead, look for other methods of consumption, such as foods that are not harmful to the lungs.