When Society Returns To Normal Post-Pandemic, Common Viruses Will Return In Droves

Social distancing, wearing masks, and limiting group gatherings are all proven measures to control the spread of Covid-19. If more people follow those safety restrictions actively, the pandemic would be at a much better stage than it currently is. Though, Covid-19 policy measures brought unexpected side effects to the public health sphere. Transmission of other common viruses has hit record lows. Why has this happened, and what will the implications be when the pandemic comes to a close?

As you may expect from a year when hand sanitizer was scarcely available, and face masks were a top-selling e-commerce item, common illness plummeted in 2020. As Covid-19 raged, annually recurring viruses like the flu, norovirus, respiratory syncytial virus, as well as common bacterial infections like whooping cough and pneumonia, were recorded far less than usual. It seems the vast reduction in human contact, eating around others, and general isolation caused the transmission of these ailments to occur rarely.

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© William A. Haseltine, PhD. All Rights Reserved.