A DAD who caught Covid-19 says he can now only smell CIGARETTES.
Mark Cowell, 46, says the bizarre long Covid stench makes him feel like he’s smoking 30 fags a day – and the constant ashtray aroma is making him depressed.
The father-of-four was double-jabbed with the AstraZeneca vaccine but still caught the virus last month.
The health and safety manager said his only symptom was a cough and a croaky sensation in his throat like he’d been chuffing on “100 cigarettes a day”.
Mark lost his senses of smell after taking Covid-19. He is still able to taste food.
He says his sense of smell partially returned about a month ago – but he can only get a whiff of phantom fags, which plague his nostrils every half hour.
Mark, a Blackpool resident, used to smoke Old Holborn rollups every day between 18 and 34.
After experiencing shortness and persistent chest infections, Mark quit smoking in 2009.
He said: “Catching Covid has made me feel like I’m back smoking 30 a day again.
“It’s a smoky cigarette dirty ashtray smell and it really makes me feel unclean because it feels like I actually smell like that, which is quite worrying.
“Possibly it’s a new variant of Covid-19 I got or maybe it’s just affecting me differently to other people.”
He added: “It’s very disturbing because, as an ex smoker, it’s one of the worst things you can smell.
“I can’t even bear the smell when I walk past people who are smoking.
“So to smell cigarettes constantly is quite depressing.
“I’m usually quite upbeat but throughout the day all I can smell is cigarettes and it makes me feel depressed.’
Mark plans to consult his GP about the persistant fag ash smell.
The NHS lists loss or changes to taste and smell as a side effects of both Covid-19 and ‘long Covid’.