The following list highlights just 7 of the most deadliest viruses and pandemics we have to deal with in the past and there have been quite a few.
All extremely serious, all still out there, most of which can cause irreversible damage and sometimes result in death, with or without medical treatment.
We again find ourselves in 2021 having to deal with yet another pandemic caused by a new strain of the coronavirus virus, COVID-19 and the thing is it won’t be the last.
Join Me on A Trip Down Memory Lane
(HIV = Human Immunodeficiency Virus & AIDS = Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome)
The initial HIV virus slowly attacks the bodies immune system executing its attack in 3 different stages.
Over the years the HIV virus damages it’s host’s immune system to such a extent that it is completely taken over by the virus rendering it dysfunctional, helpless and ineffective which ultimately results in full-blown Aids.
There are 3 stages to this disease which are as follows:
Stage 1: Acute HIV Infection (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)
- Swollen lymph nodes
- aching muscles
- fever & Chills
- mouth ulcers
- excessive night sweats
- excessive tiredness
- irritability and fatigue
Stage 2: Chronic HIV infection.
This stage may show no outward presenting symptoms and can last anywhere between 10 to 15 years although some people can move faster through this stage.
Stage 3: AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome)
- excess and sudden weight loss
- persistent fever leading to night sweats
- excessive tiredness and fatigue
- neurological disorders including depression and loss of memory loss.
- Continued reassurance of swollen lymph glands in the neck, groin and armpits
- diarrhea and sickness
- sores can occur in the mouth or on the genitals and anus
- blotches on and under the skin (red, brown, pink)
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus
SARS-CoV is a viral respiratory illness caused by a different type of coronavirus to COVID-19.
- high fever
- coughing and
- shortness of breath
2009: Swine Flu Pandemic
The Swine Flu virus was declared a flu pandemic and affected 208 different countries worldwide.
- respiratory difficulties
- sore throat
- runny and blocked nose
2012: MERS or MERS‐CoV
This is a severe respiratory illness also identified as a coronavirus which first came to light in the Arabian Peninsula.
- high fever
- breathing difficulties
Thank goodness Whooping cough is quite rare these days and occur mainly in younger children this infection begins with symptom very much similar to that of the common cold,
- acute coughing bouts
- runny nose
- red watery eyes
- sore throat
- head ache
- slight temperature
Acute fits of coughing begin around a week latter than these initial symptoms.
2014: Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
EVD runs it course in two stages starting, stage 1 is known as the dry stage which eventually progresses onto stage 2 the wet stage.
Dry Stage, symptoms include:
- aches and pains
- muscle aches and pains
- fatigue and general tiredness
- stomach pains
Wet Stage, symptoms include:
- bleeding, hemorrhaging and brushing
2016: Zika Virus
The ZIKV virus is transmitted by the Aedes mosquitoes and the symptoms are usually very mild or hardly present at all.
However becoming infected whilst pregnant usually causes a birth defect known as microcephaly along with other severe fetal brain abnormalities.
Symptoms when present can include:
- joint pain with swelling usually in hands and feet
- conjunctivitis (red eyes)
- back pain
Forever Evolving: The Influenza Virus (Flu)
There are lots of different types of the influenza virus e.g Spanish flu, Bird flu.
The flu virus can spread very quickly and easily between people and will more often than not often go away on its own.
However people with underlying health conditions, compromised immune systems including the elderly, can become gravely ill resulting in serious complications that can cause death.
Therefore it is important to note and realize that death does not occur from the influenza virus itself but from secondary complications such as secondary bacterial pneumonia.
- fever ( a temperate at or above 38C)
- sore throat
- coughing and sneezing
- runny or blocked nose
- loss of taste and smell
- loss of appetite
- aching body and muscles
- tiredness and lack of energy
- sickness & diarrhea
Some viruses such as the influenza virus have to be fought many times over due to the many strains of this particular virus and catching the flu from one particular strain of flu virus will not give you immunity against another strain.
We Have Survived Many Pandemics Before
It is also important to remember that we are a resilient species that have managed to live through all the above viruses, survived (not all, but most) and lived to tell the tale.
You are a resilient being, naturally and powerfully armed with your own in built defense mechanisms… Your Immune System and your Brain.
I think its also important to point out to you that flu season comes around every year between October and March it always has and I guess always will for the foreseeable future along with other viruses and any new strains that emerge.
There is Pressure on Health Services & A Shortage of Intensive Care Beds Every Flu Season
Flu season is so predictable that both the UK and US governments have almost every year for the past 10 years, at sometime or another, advised and requested hospitals to either cancel, reschedule and not to book any non-emergency operations during certain months of the flu season.
This is so that intensive care beds, regular beds, wards, staff and services are freed up in anticipation of the inevitably influx of patients with flu related emergencies and illnesses.
Every year since the Swine Flu Pandemic in 2009, the Britain National Health Service in particular has been reported has being in some form of crisis, under funded, under extreme pressure with a lack of beds and qualified staff.
It appears that every year the health services struggle in their duty to cope with the numbers of patients presenting with all the different strains of Influenza as well as any new strains that emerge.
As with most viruses people that have any underlying health conditions, the elderly or anyone at any age with any condition leading to a compromised immune system will find themselves more vulnerable and more susceptible to serious health complications arising from any strain of the flu virus.
Media Coverage Often Stokes Fear & Anxiety
News headlines which include the words’ crisis, under pressure, shortage of beds, emergency, pandemic, death are not new, they have been used time and time again both in the US and the UK, every winter for many years.
These alarmist words’ have been used again and again, every year, they sow fear, misunderstanding and miss information as the full story never really gets told.
I decided to write this post to dispel some of the fear people may be feeling right now with COVID-19, the masks, social, distancing, job losses, evictions, businesses closed.
Fear is not a friend of health it fosters anxiety, stress and depression symptoms that can and will lead to more serious mental illness as well as physical illness and disease.
Take Good Care of You
I cannot stress enough how important, more so now than ever (2021) that you look after your whole self, your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being.
Improved mental health and emotional well-being is so important because it also helps prevent, recover from and fight illness and disease.
Taking the very best care of your immune system, ensuring good nutrition and providing it with all the essential vitamins and minerals it requires is vital for all the above reasons.
Healthy relationships, exercise, keeping hydrated and plenty of fresh air are also other very important factors that may also need to be addresses.
Taking all the above things into consideration is the approach needed when it comes to your the condition of your overall health and ensuring that your immune system is able to efficiently and effectively fight infection and disease.
Please as always, feel free join the discussion, comment, info, advice is always encouraged and always very much appreciated.
*Please note the information contained in this post is intended for the purpose of general information and should not be used as a substitute for the individual expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals.