From Viral Infections to Corona Virus : The myths and the facts
In this write up we are trying to solve all your queries regarding the most vexed words of internet and social media – the viral infection specifically by Corona Virus. Please go through the topic and still if you have any further query then discuss with our experts under comment section.
What is Viral infection?
Infection caused by the presence of a virus in the body. Depending on the virus and the person’s state of health, various viruses can infect almost any type of body tissue, from the brain to the skin.
Definition of Viral infection in Ayurveda
Viral infection rather viral fever is categorized in Ayurveda as Agantuja Jvara. The other symptoms of viral infection are categorized differently under different rogadhikar (Specific chapter of disease as, Kasha (Cough), Swas (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD), Pratisyay (Running nose/ heaviness of head), angamarda (bodyache) etc.
Different types of line of treatment explained in details in ayurvedic treatises.
What is a Virus?
- An ultra microscopic (20 to 300 nm in diameter),
- metabolically inert,
- infectious agent
- that replicates only within the cells of living hosts,
- composed of an RNA or DNA core, a protein coat, and, in more complex types, a surrounding envelope.
They replicates mainly in bacteria, plants, and animals.
In contrast, not all viruses destroy their host cell. Some of them change the function of the cell. In this way, viruses such as human papillomavirus (HPV) or Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) can lead to cancer by forcing cells to replicate in an uncontrolled way.
A virus may remain dormant for a period before multiplying again. The person with the virus can appear to have recovered but may get sick again when the virus reactivates.
Example of viral infections
- the common cold, mainly caused by the rhinovirus, coronavirus, and adenovirus
- encephalitis and meningitis, caused by enteroviruses and the herpes viruses
- warts and skin infections, caused by the human papillomaviruses (HPV) and herpes simplex virus (HSV).
- gastroenteritis, caused by the novavirus
Other viral conditions include:
- Zika virus
- human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
- hepatitis C
- Dengue fever
- H1N1 swine flu
- Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS-CoV)
What is corona virus?
- Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some cause illness in people, and others, such as canine and feline coronaviruses, only infect animals. Rarely, animal coronaviruses that infect animals have emerged to infect people and can spread between people. This is suspected to have occurred for the virus that causes COVID-19.
- Researchers first isolated a coronavirus in 1937. They found a coronavirus responsible for an infectious bronchitis virus in birds that had the ability to devastate poultry stocks!
- The name “coronavirus” comes from the crown-like projections on their surfaces. “Corona” in Latin means “halo” or “crown.”
- Among humans, coronavirus infections most often occur during the winter months and early spring. People regularly become ill with a cold due to a coronavirus and may catch the same one about 4 months later.
- More than 74,000 people have contracted the virus in China. Health authorities have identified many other people with COVID-19 around the world, including many in the United States. On January 31, 2020, the virus passed from one person to another in the U.S. The World Health Organization (WHO) have declared a public health emergency relating to COVID-19.
Types of Coronavirus?
Doctors currently recognize seven types of coronavirus that can infect humans.
Common types include:
- 229E (alpha coronavirus)
- NL63 (alpha coronavirus)
- OC43 (beta coronavirus)
- HKU1 (beta coronavirus)
What is novel coronavirus (COVID-19)?
SARS-CoV-2 is a new strain of virus in the coronavirus family that has not been previously identified. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).
Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was discovered in 2019 when a higher than normal number of people in Wuhan, China, started to get pneumonia after having an illness similar to the flu. When doctors tested them, they found these people had a type of coronavirus they hadn’t seen before. There were already lots of types of coronavirus in the world, but this one was new.
Why did the name change from novel coronavirus to COVID-19, and what is SARS-CoV-2?
When you look at them through a microscope, coronaviruses look kind of like a crown. Corona means crown in Latin, which is how coronaviruses got their name.
At first, we called this virus ‘novel coronavirus’, which means a new strain of coronavirus. Once scientists figured out exactly what this strain of coronavirus was and how to identify it in tests, they gave it a name: SARS-CoV-2.
When someone gets sick with this virus the illness is called COVID-19. For simplicity, a lot of people are calling the virus and the disease it causes the same name, COVID-19.
What are the symptoms of someone infected with a coronavirus?
It depends on the type of Corona Virus, but common signs include:
- respiratory symptoms,
- shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties.
- In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia,
- severe acute respiratory syndrome(SARS), kidney failure and even death.
Is there a vaccine for a novel coronavirus?
When a disease is new, there is no vaccine until one is developed. It can take a number of years for a new vaccine to be developed.
Vaccine is a preventive measurement not the ultimate solution of any disease.
How does Transmission of Corona Virus Occurs ?
The viruses transmit via fluids in the respiratory system, such as mucus.
Coronaviruses can spread in the following ways:
- Coughing and sneezing without covering the mouth can disperse droplets into the air.
- Touching or shaking hands with a person who has the virus can pass the virus between individuals.
- Making contact with a surface or object that has the virus and then touching the nose, eyes, or mouth.
- Some animal coronaviruses, such as feline coronavirus (FCoV), may spread through contact with feces. However, it is unclear whether this also applies to human coronaviruses.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggest that several groups of people have the highest risk of developing complications due to COVID-19. These groups include:
- young children
- people aged 65 years or older
- women who are pregnant
Prevention from Corona Virus Infection
- To prevent transmission, people should stay at home and rest while symptoms are active.
- They should also avoid close contact with other people.
- Covering the mouth and nose with a tissue or handkerchief or use a mask while coughing or sneezing can also help prevent transmission through droplets.
- It is important to dispose of any tissues after use and maintain hygiene around the home.
- The Complete Handbook of Nature Cure by, Dr. H. K. Bakhru, ISBN 81-7224-299-8, 2013.
- Foods that Harm Foods that Heal By The Reader’s Digest Association Limited, ISBN 0276 421930 1996.
- A treatise on Home Remedies by Dr. Suresh Babu, ISBN 978-81-223-0658-3, 2011.
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