Since COVID-19 came to the US earlier this year, experts have been studying the virus and trying to understand the current and future risks that it poses. Much of that talk has centered around the possibility of a second wave of the virus. While there are still many unanswered questions surrounding the virus, experts have been able to gather more information about the first wave and the possibility for a second wave.
Is the First Wave Over?
The first wave of the virus has officially come and gone in other countries that have steadily declining COVID-19 numbers, but that isn’t the case across the US. Different cities and states have seen surging numbers at different times, so the first wave hasn’t been one consistent wave across the US. Instead, there are hot spots in certain areas. While some hot spots are beginning to die out, others are just beginning to rise. This has led experts to believe that the first wave is still actively happening, just not all in the same place at the same time.
Will Cooler Weather Cause a Second Wave?
Cooler weather is typically associated with a rise in the number of cold and flu virus cases, so will the same happen for COVID cases? Experts at John Hopkins have learned that warm weather hasn’t led to a decline in the number of cases, so it isn’t believed that cooler weather in the fall will be the cause of a second wave. That isn’t to say that there won’t be a second wave though. In fact, a second wave is almost guaranteed to happen around fall time. The prediction of a second wave has nothing to do with the temperature outside – it’s all about patient behavior.
Cellular data shows that people are not following social distancing guidelines and large group gatherings and events are still happening. If even one person attending a gathering is carrying the virus, they can infect a large number of people. It can take up to 2 weeks to display symptoms, while some people are asymptotic the entire time they’re infected. People assume that if they feel fine it’s okay to go out in social settings, but that’s a dangerous misconception. Fall is typically associated with more family gatherings as the holidays approach, so a second wave is sure to occur.
How to Protect Yourself Against a Second Wave
The best way to lower your risk of being affected by a second wave of the virus is to follow recommendations from health experts. That means frequent hand washing, mask wearing, social distancing, and avoiding large groups and gatherings. Even if you have no symptoms, you may be carrying and spreading the virus to others.
If you’re in need of COVID-19 testing or antibody testing, visit your local urgent care center today for quick and affordable care!