Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry advises residents dealing with wildfire smoke to stay indoors, stay hydrated, and to take it easy.
During Wednesday’s wildfire update, Dr. Henry clarified that while the smoke contains pollutants, it’s different from long-term exposure to city pollution in places like Beijing.
Henry says masks are also not the answer for most people. She says the only effective mask for wildfire smoke, the N95 respirator, makes it more difficult to breathe, meaning they can cause more health problems for those with underlying health conditions like asthma.
Dr. Henry says the vast majority of people will see no long-term health effects from the wildire smoke. She says once the smoke passes, symptoms will subside.