The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic has hit India quite hard. Coming at a time when people had started going back to “normalcy”, the second wave is expected to be quite dreadful – as we can see through the rising number of active cases on a daily basis. Experts believe that we are yet to witness the peak of the second wave and warn people that the months of May and June are going to be quite tough.
While it is highly debated over what caused this sudden peak in the number of cases in India (let’s not forget the election rallies and Kumbh Mela), the fact is that the situation is getting really bad, and it is up to every citizen of the country to step up and fight the virus. No, we are not asking you to get out of your house (in fact, quite the opposite), but this article will tell you what you can do on your part to prevent the virus.
Is The Virus More Dangerous This Time?
One might think that what’s the big deal; we dealt with it last year, then how is it different this time around? For starters, the virus has mutated quite a lot. Dr. Suneela Garg, member of the COVID India Task Force of Lancet Commission explained in an interview that the variant of the virus prevalent in the country is airborne.
As the virus has mutated to a large extent since the past year, it becomes more difficult to prevent it from spreading as scientists reveal that the double-mutant variant is 70 times more contagious than the previous one.
This time around, the 20-40 age group has been the most affected in the country due to the variant. India had previously carried out vaccinations for those above the age of 45 and thus was comparatively resistant to the strain. The youth, meanwhile, was also exposed to the virus because they were out in the community due to several reasons, personal and otherwise.
Moreover, the virus spread in the country largely due to carelessness, negligence, and urgency to go back to ‘normal’ – with schools, colleges, and other institutions opening up as soon as the number of cases declined. There was little control over the number of people in public spaces and social distancing went down the drain. All of this led to a larger number of asymptomatic carriers transmitting the virus.
What Can We Do On Our Part?
The rules of prevention are not quite different than last time, to be honest. Social distancing, wearing of masks, and stepping out of the house only when necessary, are still the staple golden rules to prevent getting infected by the virus. In the interview, Dr. Garg also added that because of the strength of the mutant variant, one needs to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour even at home and wear a preferably triple-layered mask.
Temporary lockdowns and curfews across cities will help curb the virus very much, although it might not be seen as a practical solution because of its economic impact on families and livelihood.
It has also been seen that a vast number of young people infected by the virus wait a long time before getting their symptoms checked by doctors. This allows the virus to stay in the body for a longer time, paving the way for further mutation. It is advised to get in touch with doctors as soon as you show any virus symptoms.
Also Read: How We, As People, Are Responsible For Breakdown Of The Healthcare System In COVID-19 2nd Wave
Due to a shortage in the number of hospital admissions at this time, it is also advised to keep an oximeter and a thermometer to assist in-home treatments. Doctors advise that it is necessary to monitor body temperature, oxygen saturation levels, and taking the six-minute walk test to prevent lung infections.
As responsible citizens of the country, we can also take to our social media to spread awareness and offer help as much as we can. Since the past few weeks, WhatsApp and Twitter users have started to make great efforts in verifying the availability of medical care and facilities for those in need. It is astonishing how a small effort can actually help save lives through social media.
Lastly, what we would like to say is that it is highly important not to turn into a COVIDiot at this time. We have already witnessed a very tough time because of the actions and negligence of COVIDiots. Stay at home as much as you can and partake in activities that boost your immunity.
Due to the increase in cases, the government has finally taken the decision for mass vaccination. Registering for vaccines is also very important as they will help reduce the number of severe infections diligently. It is pertinent that we recognise the fake news circulating around the effectiveness of the vaccine and take them so as to be safe.
We must keep our cool at this time and offer any kind of support (preferably virtual) that we can to those affected by the virus. Vaccination, herd immunity, and a sensible outlook towards the virus are what the country needs right now. Take care and let us know what else can be done to prevent the virus by commenting below.
Image Credits: Google Images, Hindustan Times
Find the blogger: @AishuPoshu
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