Puff, puff, pass is the first rule you learn when you start smoking weed, but thanks to the pandemic, the rules are changing. In the germaphobe era of coronavirus, where the new normal is singing Happy Birthday when you wash your hands - “puff, puff, don’t pass” should be a no-brainer.
Here’s why the rule is changing and some other tips you should keep in mind, just in case you want to know more:
Puff, Puff, (Don’t) Pass
The WHO has noted that individuals with smoking-related heart and lung conditions are “at higher risk of developing severe COVID-19 symptoms,” and the organization is warning against tobacco use and smoking. The WHO’s smoking-free initiative is further supported by findings from a recent study by Chinese researchers, who found that the risk was significantly (14%) higher among patients with a history of smoking.
But apart from that, the puff, puff, pass rule may put you at an even higher risk.
Because sharing cannabis is such a large part of the culture, it might feel unnatural not to pass. If you’re practising social distancing, chances are you’re not passing any pipes, pens or pre-rolls. But if you share a home with others, remember that sharing pipes or other accessories may also be a risk.
Using your own pieces and keeping them clean is important. 90% isopropyl alcohol is an affordable, accessible disinfectant that’s appropriate to use on any material in your collection (glass, plastic, metal, etc.).
And no, bongwater does not cleanse all the toxins out of your marijuana smoke. In fact, some research shows that dirty bong water can transmit higher levels of carbon monoxide and the harmful compound benzene.
Don’t Self Medicate
Mary Jane is great for a lot of things, but killing viruses and bacteria is not one of them. So if you’re feeling ill, pass, don’t puff. Just as with smoking or vaping - inhaling the smoke of any sort is not good for your illness. Especially now, when there is a pandemic - just skip the weed and turn to a doctor to get checked and stay safe. Since a dry cough is characteristic of COVID-19, any cough caused by marijuana use could mimic that symptom, thus increasing the risks of delayed diagnosis or even misdiagnosis.
Stick To Your Normal Intake
Between the stress of the situation, more time at home, and the boredom that results from endless days inside, you don’t want to accidentally over-medicate or over-spend. Keeping your schedule as close to normal as possible will help you manage your cannabis resources and your budget.
The bottom line? Take care of yourself. Don’t think that just because there are no explicit studies on weed - you can let it pass. Maintain some strict ground rules and try to stick by them to stay protected and safe.