The relaxation of protection measures against pandemic and the arrival of autumn have led to influenza viruses and COVID-19 circulate simultaneously during the last months of the year.
This can raise some doubts among the population about how to act. Above all, taking into account that both infections affect the respiratory tract and are transmitted in a similar way (by coughing, sneezing, talking or simply by touching something that is infected with the virus).
This atypical context compared to previous seasons highlights the importance of ending erroneous theories about both viruses to avoid contagion or, in case of infection, apply the appropriate treatment as soon as possible.
Some of the false beliefs generated around this type of infections They are the impossibility of contagion by wearing a mask, the low severity of the flu or the incompatibility between vaccines.
“This season we are facing two pandemics. It should not be forgotten that the adoption of protective guidelines against COVID-19 last winter has meant that this year society has not developed that natural immunity against the flu, which causes its incidence to be much more intense, “he says. Maria Sanchez, e-Health Medical Manager of Cigna Spain.
“For this reason, it is essential not to relax and continue applying all prevention measures on a day-to-day basis, as they will help us avoid the spread of both viruses,” he warns.
For this reason, experts in health services have analyzed the characteristics of both viruses to dismantle the false beliefs that have been established in society around them.
Getting the flu will not be a problem this year as we continue to wear masks
It should be borne in mind that the incidence of flu in 2020 was lower not only due to masks, but also due to the high rates of influenza vaccination, which reached record numbers last year, and due to social distancing.
Now, meetings with people from different circles have recovered and the mask is not mandatory in all spaces. This makes it easy for aerosols loaded with viral particles of any kind to stay in the air for hours.
For this reason, it is important to maintain some of the proper hygiene habits, such as washing your hands to avoid germs and protect yourself from diseases or the use of masks in closed spaces or in the presence of crowds.
Getting the flu and COVID-19 vaccine makes people more vulnerable
Inoculations offer the best protection against virus, so there is no reason to think that combining the two vaccines poses a risk to human health.
It is possible that once you have received one of the two vaccines you will begin to feel certain symptoms similar to those of these infections, but it is a natural reaction of the body when generating antibodies.
And although a large part of Spaniards have already received the complete guideline to protect themselves against COVID-19, it is also essential to raise awareness about the flu vaccine. In addition, this second acts as a totally protective barrier against the virus, preventing its contagion.
Getting infected with the COVID-19 virus is no worse than the seasonal flu.
Although both infections are considered respiratory diseases and present similar symptoms, they are caused by different viruses, so it is important not to underestimate the risk of either disease or treat them in the same way.
For starters, unlike the flu, which is a seasonal virus, COVID-19 is active year-round.
On the other hand, SARS-CoV-2 spreads faster than seasonal flu and may have a higher death rate.
But the flu is also associated with certain complications. Although many healthy people can fight it without problems, it is a viral infection that can sometimes be complicated by more serious conditions such as pneumonia, encephalitis or myocarditis. For this reason, it is important to contact the doctor in case of any worsening of the condition.
Not taking measures against Covid-19 or the flu is better to achieve herd immunity
Although some people may develop a mild case of Covid-19 or show no symptoms, it is not possible to predict how the body will react in case of infection.
The same goes for the flu. They are two deadly infections and the entire population is in danger by contracting them.
In addition, in the specific case of Covid-19, it is a disease whose consequences are still unknown. More than enough reasons to take precautionary measures during these months.
Home remedies for protection help prevent these infections
There is no evidence that herbal teas or homemade recipes have a direct effect in preventing one of these two diseases. However, the immune system needs enough energy and nutrients to function properly.
Therefore, although there is no food or supplement that strengthens immunity or prevents us from getting highly infectious viruses such as the flu, by eating a wide range of fruits and vegetables, it is possible to obtain all the nutrients that the immune system needs. .
Banishing these myths will help improve people’s overall health. In fact, since the outbreak of the pandemic, a large part of the population considers the care of their health and well-being as a relevant area to pay attention to, and they incorporate various initiatives focused, fundamentally, on the adoption of a healthy lifestyle.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.