In the past year, many changes have occurred in our society due to the recent outbreak of a virus called COVID-19. Schools and businesses shut down, masks are required when simply going about day to day tasks, and social distancing has become a common practice. One big question, however, is what makes COVID-19 so dangerous?
Now, COVID isn’t the most deadly virus out there, but it is devastating in other ways. One of the reasons that COVID is so dangerous is because, initially, no one was immune to it yet. Humans’ bodies need to be exposed to certain bacteria and viruses to allow their bodies to build up an immunity. Nowadays we have vaccines that let our bodies build up this immunity by being injected with dead viruses and bacteria for our immune systems to fight off. However, due to COVID’ more recent discovery, we didn’t have the vaccines available to provide people with, meaning that COVID symptoms will have the full effect on one’s body.
Another reason that COVID can be so dangerous is that it can easily be transmitted. Because the virus is found in the upper airway it can be transmitted via coughing, sneezing or even just talking. This easy transmission means that even saying hello to someone might mean that you’ve been infected, although people don’t always know if they have or haven’t been infected. Because COVID carriers can sometimes be asymptomatic, they don’t always know when they have the virus. This means that, while the carrier feels perfectly fine, they do have the opportunity to spread the virus. If someone comes in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID, it is recommended that they quarantine for 14 days so that the potential carrier has time to see if they experience any symptoms and to start shedding the virus.
That is yet another reason why COVID can be so dangerous. Symptoms may vary from person to person which means that some people may be more affected than others. For some people they might die from the effects of the virus while others don’t even realize they have it. Some people, however, are thought to be at a higher risk compared to others. People over the age of 70 may be at risk simply due to the deteriorating state of their bodies. People who have respiratory issues may also be at risk as, as stated before, the virus infects the airway. Even so, just because someone isn’t in the at risk group, doesn’t mean that they are immune to the effects of the virus. Many people think that children and teenagers will be fine due to their young age, but that’s not always true. There have been multiple occasions where a teenager or child has had to be hospitalized due to the virus. While these cases are not overly common, they happen enough that it should be a concern. It is not uncommon for a teenager to avoid wearing a mask or social distancing because they think that they won’t be affected, but that’s not always true.
There is another, less biological danger that comes with COVID though and that would be the psychological effects. Many people may be isolated due to the virus. This combined with the stress and worry associated with a pandemic may have negative effects on the psyche. Some worry that the lock down may affect childrens’ ability to socialize with their peers. With all of this uncertainty, we can only hope that things will be able to go back to normal soon.