The change of seasons usually leads to predictable cold symptoms, which many people have become familiar with several times a year. But seasonal runny nose, colds, and flu have a harder time spreading when people are socially distant, wear masks, and follow other pandemic protocols.
“It is absolutely due to the precautions we take,” said CNN Medical Analyst and Emergency Doctor Dr. Leana S. Wen. “The same precautionary measures that protect us against coronaviruses also protect against cold, river and respiratory pathogens.
“It is the fact that you are keeping your distance, wearing a mask, washing your hands more, that you are making sure someone has the disease and doesn’t know it,” said Wen, professor of public health at George Washington University University .
“In the past it might have been acceptable to sneeze and cough a little and still go to work or school, and now it would not be acceptable,” she added. “That also reduces the risk of transmission.”
Wen pointed to Australia’s milder flu season during the winter months as a further indication that “the same precautions to protect against coronavirus also reduced flu cases”.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the US National Institute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases, found that Australia had the fewest “remembered” cases of flu during its winter flu season from April to September.
Fauci attributed the flu vaccination, wearing masks, avoiding crowds, physical distance, and frequent hand washing as the measures that may have protected people in the southern hemisphere that winter.
“If you look at the long-standing data on flu vaccines, they are not perfect,” said Fauci on September 17th in an interview with radio station WTOP in Washington, DC. “We know from the data that flu vaccinations don’t just prevent infections.”; they prevent people who become infected from developing serious progressive diseases that sometimes lead to hospitalizations. “
If you haven’t had a flu shot, experts say now is the time. The northern hemisphere flu season usually starts in November, Wen said, and it’s best to get vaccinated before November.
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