Just when everyone thought that the COVID-19 pandemic has abated and under control, after the Vaccination drive had begun; most unfortunately, India has been hit by the Corona Second Wave. Times are tough, but we all have a part to play to overcome this adversity, by following the advised safety protocols.
There is a lot of misleading information regarding the second wave of the pandemic that makes everyone all the more confused and sceptical. This is our effort to provide you with the correct information about the same; here is everything that you need to know.
How is COVID Second Wave Different from the First Wave?
India is recording close to 2.5 lakh cases per day and the total cases in the country stand at more than 15 lakhs in the first half of April 2021 itself. It is said that India is experiencing the fastest COVID-19 spread this time around, making it a matter of concern for everyone across the country. One of the main reasons for this is the fact that people are not being able to understand whether they are affected by the virus or it is just a normal, or seasonal health issue. That, in a big part, is due to the various minute characteristics concerning the Corona second wave symptoms, age profile, spatial distribution, and so on, which differs from the first wave.
When the first wave of COVID-19 hit the country, local mutations were not that prevalent. However, experts now believe that the current surge that we are experiencing is mainly due to the homegrown mutant variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Though initially, the mutant strains came from abroad, like UK and South Africa, If reports are to be believed, it is being said that genome sequencing in one of the Indian states led to the attribution of over 60% of the fresh cases caused by the homegrown mutant variants of the COVID virus.
Who is Being Affected the Most?
While there are many claims that the new wave of COVID-19 is affecting the younger age group more; the truth is that everyone is vulnerable to the virus. During the first wave of the virus, as per the Government data in December 2020, the mortality rate amongst the older people was high (88% approx.)
However, in the current wave, a few Indian states like Karnataka, Maharashtra, and others, where the cases are at peak; it is seen that people below 45 years are being affected the most. The reason behind this could be the fact that younger people have to move around more, due to their engagement in economic activities while the older people remain indoors. But, there is no solid report that backs up the claim of the younger generation being affected the most by Corona second wave. What is most important at this moment is that you follow all the safety protocols like wearing a mask, sanitising hands frequently and maintaining social distancing, since this mutant strain is supposed to be airborne.
Symptoms of COVID-19 Second Wave
The symptoms of Corona second wave varies slightly from the first wave and because of this reason, most people are not able to differentiate. It is stated that the delay in the diagnosis of the virus is leading to the delay of COVID second wave treatment, making the scenario more severe than anticipated.
The list of Corona second wave symptoms are:
- Body ache
- Pain in the lower back (near the kidney)
- Severe headache
- Sore throat
- Hearing impairment
- Loose motions
- Fever, cough.
- Tingling in the fingers or toes.
These symptoms were not seen frequently in the first wave however, in the second strain, these Coronavirus symptoms are a lot more evident. There have been instances where people experiencing pain in the lower back area mistook it for a normal issue. However, if you experience any of the above-mentioned symptoms for a longer period, it is advisable to get yourself tested.
The other common and severe symptoms of COVID-19 in India, apart from the new strain or second wave ones are: –
• Chest pain
• High fever, running nose, dry throat (cough)
• Tightening of the chest
• Loss of taste and/or smell
• Fatigue and weakness
Some affected people were also reported to have low blood pressure which led to more weakness and dizziness. This can be touted as some of the strange symptoms of COVID and that is why, in case you experience low BP all of a sudden, and it persists for a longer period, consult the doctor immediately.
The first COVID-19 wave was widespread in terms of geography with wider hotspots across the country while the second wave is limited to few geographical locations but is more infectious. As per the Lancet COVID-19 Commission by India Task Force, it is stated that the second wave of this deadly virus is clustered.
Precautions to be taken for Fighting the COVID-19 Second Wave
The virus spreads from person to person via respiratory droplets when the infected person coughs or sneezes or even comes in physical contact (handshake, fist bump, and so on) with the non-infected person. For some people, staying at home or working from home is possible while for others, they have to move out of the house. Either way, it is necessary to make sure that all the safety protocols and necessary precautions are being taken at home and also when you are moving out. For Households with elderly people or those with co-morbidities like blood sugar, hypertension, heart disease, and so on; taking precautionary measures becomes even more mandatory. Here are some of the steps that you need to follow: –
Sanitise before Entering Home – If you or anyone from your household has to go out for work, make sure that they sanitise before entering the house. Keep the footwear outside, use a disinfectant spray that can be used on the skin - spray it on surfaces that you or they have touched, and only then enter the house. And once you enter the house, take a hot water shower and sanitise entirely.
Wash your Hands – Ensuring good hygiene is one of the best ways of preventing COVID-19. Make sure to wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds of being in a public place or after blowing your nose, sneezing, or coughing. Also, ensure to wash your hands in the following circumstances: –
• Before eating or preparing food
• Before touching your face
• After using the public or common restroom
• After handling your mask
• After caring for someone who is unwell
• After touching animals or pets
Carry a sanitiser with you that contains at least 60% alcohol or disinfectant sprays that can be used on the human skin directly. Sanitise all the parts of your hand and make sure that they are sanitised properly.
In addition to this, practising social distancing even at home, wearing a mask and gloves, eating healthy and warm food, and being happy mentally are some of the measures that you need to ensure without fail. Especially around the older adults, make sure that they are optimistic, happy and joyful so that they can live a stress-free life.
Emoha Elder Care is one of the leading elder home care services in India that takes care of senior citizens by helping them in their errands or assisting them during health emergencies, and much more. At Emoha, it is always #EldersFirst.