Coronavirus is starting to impact all of our lives in one way or another. Being in the US, I was not worried about this virus until about a week ago. I took the standard approach that it is just like the flu and not that big of a deal. After delving into the topic, I definitely began to change my tune. While the majority of people infected do not have major complications, the two week incubation period, the rapidity with which it spreads, and how long the virus can live outside of the body are alarming. From what I have read 1 person can infect up to 2.5-5 people where the regular flu is roughly 1.3. The virus can also live on surfaces for up to 5 days potentially. These are all reasons I believe it is prudent for governments and organizations to cancel large scale events right now.
One of the biggest problems is the over-run of our healthcare system like what is happening in Italy. Italy was slow to respond and is now in complete lockdown trying to slow the spread of the virus. Their hospitals are over 200% capacity and turning operating rooms into ICUs. Currently, the number of cases doubles roughly every 6 days which could easily see the number of cases in the US reach over 1,000,000 by the end of April, which could send 100,000+ people to the hospital. We only have 1,000,000 hospital beds in the US and we need them for more than coronavirus patients. If they all hit over the same 2-4 week period we wouldn’t be able to cope. If estimates are correct in the US and we could have potentially 10 million people hospitalized it pays to slow this down as much as possible. Not only is a lack of hospital beds a problem but also a lack of medical professionals to deal with this issue. That group is already stressed enough and extra work will only impair their immune system. The last thing we need is a lot of the nurses and doctors sick with the virus.
While this sounds alarmist, I do believe we will be ok. It appears our government and organizations are taking this seriously and doing everything they can. The impact on the economy is going to e a tough one and I fully expect government stimulus to help us along the way.
At the moment, it is a good idea to be hypervigilant about your hygiene. Wash your hands often. Breathe through your nose. That is our first line of defense against airborne pathogens. It is how we filter our air and the nitric oxide in our nasal sinuses has strong anti-viral properties. Make sure to stay hydrated and limit your physical contact with people you don’t know. Limit your travel if possible. If you have symptoms be sure to let others know and stay away from high-risk individuals. Take time to get outside, stay active, and spend time down-regulating through meditation or breath practice. In times like these, limiting your stress will go a long way to support your immune system.
This week’s links are mainly on coronavirus. I hope they provide you with information to help you make the best decisions for you and your family