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Smoking damages your lungs and airways and harms the immune system, reducing your ability to fight against respiratory viral infections like COVID-19.

Smoking also involves repetitive hand-to-face movements, which increases the risk of viruses entering the body. 

This means that if you smoke, you generally have an increased risk of contracting respiratory infections like COVID-19 and you are more likely to have underlying smoking-related conditions, which could lead to more severe disease outcomes.

People who are exposed to second-hand smoke are also at generally increased risk of harm to their lungs and hearts. Children are especially at risk when exposed to second-hand smoke as they have less well-developed airways, lungs and immune systems.

Stopping smoking brings immediate benefits to health, including if you have an existing smoking-related disease. Given the Covid Pandemic, there has never been a better time to stop smoking.