Amidst the ongoing debate triggered by the announcement that COVID-19 is no more a pandemic, one can see many positive and negative developments. For example, CDC has said that over 32% of people should wear masks inside public spaces, including those at a higher risk of getting severely sick from the infection. Looking back about two months, you will realize that this has been a drastic improvement. Earlier, 87% of people hailed from medium to high-risk community-level counties. However, people living in high-risk areas still need to take preventive measures like masking for their and others’ sake.
CDC data suggest that coronavirus cases are going down in the country – the average daily rate of infections peaked at 130,000 in July, but it has come down to 55,000 daily. As for the transmission rate, it hasn’t slowed down yet. But another good thing is the number of deaths has decreased to 350 a day compared to 500 in August. According to experts, a weekly average of this stands at 2,500 deaths, which is a significant number. And this makes some believe that the pandemic hasn’t ended. Experts like Anthony Fauci also opine that it’s not an acceptable scenario. The death count has to reduce a lot.
In 2020, MyBioSource conducted a survey on Americans that revealed that 45% of 3,442 participants agreed that coronavirus is the leading cause of concern in the country. However, the same percentage drastically went down to 3% recently. If you probe further into what people and government think of the situation, it can be pretty bewildering because of the rising infections. However, it is crucial to analyze the problem by taking stock of what coronavirus has done. A comprehensive view will help you set your priorities. So, here you go!
Shortened life expectancy due to COVID-19
It is the first time in one hundred years of history in the US that life expectancy recorded a drop for two consecutive years. If an American born in 2019 could think of living for 79 years, it went down to 77 years for 2020- and 76.1 years for 2021-born. According to CDC data, some other people may be able to live even less than this. Virginia Commonwealth University’s Dr. Steven Woolf feels that these results are worrying. Since other well-to-do nations supposedly have longer lives, this revelation can sound even more distressful. Many Native Americans lost their lives to the pandemic. Today, their life expectancy is as much as the population of the 1940s.
Some attribute the massive decline in white Americans’ life expectancy to resistance to vaccination and mitigation measures. Besides this, a shorter lifespan can also be attributable to factors like heart ailment, liver disorder, injuries, and suicides. In 2021, unintentional injuries saw a massive jump in numbers due to medicine overdose during the pandemic.
Chronic brain injury due to coronavirus
According to US researchers, COVID-19-infected people are more vulnerable to brain injuries than those who never contracted the virus. One of the reports published in Nature Medicine informed that it studied brain health issues prevalent in 44 types of disorders. It discovered that the risk of neurological condition was almost 7% higher in those who suffered from the infection than in others who never had it. If you try to take a rough estimate out of this, you will realize that more than 6 million Americans with brain disorders had coronavirus.
According to Washington University School of Medicine’s Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly, it is one of the virus’s most severe long-term health outcomes. Experts inform that a common symptom in these patients has been memory loss or brain fog. COVID-19 patients showed almost 77% more risk of facing memory problems. At the same time, people with coronavirus infection were also 50% more susceptible to developing ischemic stroke than anyone who had never contracted the virus. Ischemic stroke can happen due to blood clots.
COVID-infected people also had an 80% higher risk of suffering from seizures, 43% being more vulnerable to depression and anxiety issues, etc. At least 35% of patients also showed a tendency to develop headaches. Due to all these observations, the health leaders believe that the government needs to prepare for the post-pandemic world. All these challenges require immediate and planned intervention. However, the scale at which the pandemic happened was a significant deterrent.
If you want to stay safe and protect your health, it can be wise to consider taking COVID-19 shots. The primary vaccine doses help build immunity, and the boosters help increase its strength. The earlier vaccines targeted the old strain, but the updated ones can combat both older and new ones. Because the flu season has also started, you will not want to expose your health to more risks. It’s necessary for your protection, so don’t give up yet. You can consult your doctors to understand how to balance your flu and coronavirus doses.