A new study shows that people who are living in their parents’ basements and basements alone are five times more likely to die prematurely from the coronavirus than those living with family members.
Researchers from the University of Adelaide and the University at Albany analysed data from a survey of nearly 500,000 Australians between 2001 and 2013.
They found that basements were the most common place people lived when they were younger.
The researchers said they found that people living with a family member or close friend were twice as likely to have died prematurely from coronaviruses as those who lived with a friend or family member.
The study also found that those living in basements had a higher mortality rate than those who were living with close relatives or with friends or relatives.
“The most common scenario is that you’re living in your parents’ basement with family and friends and you’re not sure who’s going to come to help you,” said lead author Professor Peter Schmitz.
“But you know the likelihood of you getting sick from this virus is very high.”
Researchers found that more than 40 per cent of the people living in a basement died before the age of 30, compared with just 4 per cent in homes with a third or more of the family.
They also found an association between living in an enclosed space and higher death rates, with basements having a higher death rate than houses with a smaller percentage of the occupants.
The findings suggest that basement living may be an even greater risk than living in homes, Professor Schmitx said.
“It’s an environment where you can get more of your body heat into your body temperature and that could make you more susceptible to respiratory illness.”
In the study, people living alone were three times more than those in basement housing.
Professor Schmitl said he hoped the study could help educate people about the dangers of living in large apartments.
“We want to encourage people to get into basements when possible and that’s the right way to live,” he said.