Smoking Pot During COVID-19?
If you’re not a daily smoker of marijuana, then now is not the time to start. I understand the heightened anxiety, and the mandates of sheltering at home alone, may be a perfect set up for someone to begin smoking pot excessively, while neglecting the potential increased risks associated with an addiction to cannabis at this time. For those who are social smokers, you may not be smoking, since the social activity in your life has been suspended for a while. However, I know there are a significant percentage of smokers that have grown dependent on the drug to assist and cope with a number of things like: sleep, anxiety, social phobia, etc. Many others have a medicinal reason they smoke and have been certified by a physician to obtain marijuana from a dispensary nearby. Pre-Conoravirus pandemic, or COVID-19, that could be understandable, but to allow yourself to smoke during a time when a virus is killing hundreds of thousands of people worldwide with a respiratory disease, appears to be flirting with death.
Chronic Use of Marijuana
We know that chronic substance use through smoking pot causes damage to the lungs over time. The medical studies show that a person who smokes daily could develop a chronic case of bronchitis, which later exacerbates into COPD. Any pre-existing respiratory illness or vulnerability and contracting the virus has been known to increase your illness to experiencing the most severe symptoms of the Coronavirus and requiring a ventilator. Also, when you smoke marijuana, you are inhaling part of the plant and seeds, which only irritates the lungs, says Dr. Mitchell Glass, a pulmonologist and a spokesperson for the American Lung Association.
Can You Stop Smoking Pot?
Despite the severe consequences presented here, there are some people, we’ll consider addicted to marijuana, who will not consider being abstinent from the drug. That is part of the defining nature of addiction. The addictive behavior – smoking pot – will not change despite serious consequences. This is seen often in alcoholics who continue to drink after multiple DUIs and a spouse who may be threatening to leave due to the alcohol.
The question for you may be: Can I stop smoking pot? If you can’t, then I suggest you contact an addiction specialist to assist you with a plan and support you through the process. It is not a shameful thing to continue to smoke during this pandemic, it just may be your addiction!
Find Help and Stay Safe Today
If you, or a loved one is caught up in a marijuana addiction in this COVID-19 pandemic, please contact us through our website. We are glad to assist you with treatment, or connect you with a resource near you. Please stay safe, stop smoking pot, and minimize your exposure to the virus and any risky behaviors.
William J. Heran, Ph.D., LCSW, SAP CEO/Co-Founder Providence Treatment Philadelphia, PA