Coronavirus known as SARS-CoV-2 causes Coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Coronavirus disease has caused many people taking precautions against contracting the virus. It’s also raising a lot of questions about weed, smoking, edibles, THC, CBD, and your health during this difficult time.
The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted cannabis commerce across the globe, causing closure of local cannabis Dispensaries and store. This has caused shortage in supply and most dispensaries are adopting curbside pickup and delivery ordering. SARS-CoV-2 is canceling most 420 events, and changing personal behavior away from sharing joints and pipes. Many questions have arise on some consumer practices to as to avoid the COVID-19. some of these questions are health related and can prevent cannabis consumers from contracting the disease.
Good Practices For Cannabis consumers
- Hand washing
Hand washing does not just wash down the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Soap actually kills the virus. How? It’s all about soap’s molecular structure.
How soap destroys viruses
The soap takes care of the virus much like it takes care of the oil in the water. “It’s almost like a crowbar; it starts to pull all the things apart,” Thordarson says.
One side of the soap molecule (the one that’s attracted to fat and repelled by water) buries its way into the virus’s fat and protein shell. Fortunately, the chemical bonds holding the virus together aren’t very strong, so this intrusion is enough to break the virus’s coat. “You pull the virus apart, you make it soluble in water, and it disintegrates,” he says.
Then the harmless shards of virus get flushed down the drain. And even if it the soap doesn’t destroy every virus, you’ll still rid them from your hands with soap and water, as well as any grease or dirt they may be clinging to. Soap will also wash away bacteria and other viruses that may be a bit tougher than coronavirus, and harder to disintegrate.
See this explainer from Vox: How soap absolutely annihilates the coronavirus.
2. Sharing joints, blunts, and bongs
The puff-and-pass customs surrounding cannabis are among the greatest pleasures of the plant. But passing around a joint is a good way to spread any virus, including SARS CoV-2. Stop sharing, stick to your own supply. This will prevent the spread of the virus.
3. Presenting symptoms
Use this Coronavirus Assessment Tool developed by Providence Health and Microsoft.
4. Social distancing
The practice of social distancing remains one of the best method to prevent being contaminated by this pandemic virus. Everyone in North America should now be fully into a social distancing regimen. Many cities and states now operate under stay-at-home advisories or orders. Work from home if you can. Reduce, limit, or eliminate trips outside the house. Strategize to make one trip to the grocery store per week. Keep 6 feet of distance between yourself and others. Cancel and reschedule all events. Weddings, birthday parties, card nights: Nope. Done. Help people in high-risk categories. A weekly trip to the grocery store could be a life-or-death decision for them. If you’re in a low-risk demographic, offer to pick up their items the next time you make a run.
5. Does Cannabis or CBD prevent or cure COVID-19
No. As for now.
Research on cannabis terpene formulation is uniquely dedicated for the treatment and prevention of viral infections and is specifically designed for high-risk populations and treatment of infections such as the COVID-19 novel strain of coronavirus.
In previous research, undertaken since the outbreak of the SARS virus in 2002, cannabis terpenes have been found to be effective potential antiviral agents, and specific terpenes that came into contact with the SARS virus were found to reduce its severity and impact (both in-vitro and in-vivo) by withholding a certain protein that replicates the RNA – preventing it from penetrating healthy cells and using them as hosts for its replication.
As for now research is actively going on
* To identify the plant’s own molecules that are capable of suppressing the immune response to the COVID-19 coronavirus – which causes inflammation and severe disease – to lower the immune system response without suppressing it, thereby providing better complementary treatment to the steroids, which completely suppress the immune system.
* looking at the ACE2 receptor – which allows the virus to inject its genetic expression into human cells and proliferate.
6. Is it safe to consume cannabis right now?
In general, yes.
A New York-based physician, Dr. Junella Chin, answered many of the most pressing questions about cannabis use and COVID-19 in the article: Are cannabis users more at risk for COVID-19?
Be aware of COVID-19 symptoms
What to do if you suspect you have COVID-19: Consult this Washington State DOH advisory, which contains action items.
Don’t jam up the emergency room if it’s just a common cold, but get yourself tested if you fit the criteria for COVID-19 symptoms. Those include:
- Dry cough
- Shortness of breath
- Have been in contact with a COVID-19 patient, or traveled recently to an area with ongoing spread.
Some best practices.
Have a self-quarantine plan
At this point we’re talking about a spectrum, from choosing a work-at-home option (if you’re fortunate enough to have that choice) to a full-on home quarantine. The CDC has a page of recommendations for those who stay home with a suspected case of COVID-19.
What if you’ve been in close contact with someone with COVID-19? Stay inside and closely monitor yourself for 14 days.
“Someone in my house has it. What now?” Viral load matters. That means the fewer viral droplets that enter your system, the milder the severity of your case may be. So if a member of your household contracts the virus, it’s imperative that they separate from others in a quarantine room.