The COVID-19 epidemic has raged across the world for close to two years now, raising many questions. Because this is a new virus, scientists have had to develop new treatments and vaccines. Unfortunately, many people in many countries have spread misinformation about the virus. In some cases, this misinformation has delayed diagnosis and many people have died worldwide.
Now, 18 months after the US was literally shut down, we have learned more about coronavirus signs and symptoms and how the illness spreads. Much research has also been done about the natural immunities and acquired immunities that develop from infection or vaccination. The experts at BASS Urgent Care want to share this information with you to aid you in your decisions about coronavirus care.
Natural immunity to any type of disease, including the COVID-19 virus, occurs when the person is actually exposed to the disease. After exposure, the body produces antibodies to fight off the disease. If the individual is exposed to the same disease again,these antibodies will fight off any infection. Immuno-compromised individuals may not be able to produce the antibodies necessary to result in natural immunity. They may also be at elevated risk for a more severe illness or death if they should become infected by COVID.
Acquired immunity results from immunization. Acquired immunity is more effective than natural immunity for many, but not all, viruses. The CDC recently published information about acquired versus natural immunity to the coronavirus. In this Science Brief dated October 29, 2021, the CDC states that natural and acquired immunities have proven to be relatively effective for approximately 6 months. Neither is 100% effective.
If you are concerned about the coronavirus vaccine, rest assured that receiving any of the three available vaccines will not give you COVID-19. Acquiring natural immunity requires infection by COVID-19. This exposure could result in an unexpectedly severe or even fatal case, so vaccination is a safer choice.
The US has had 46.1 million confirmed coronavirus cases and 747,000 deaths attributed to COVID-19. According to the CDC, there are tens of millions more cases that were never diagnosed. Another study was startling for unvaccinated individuals. The Delta variant is less dangerous for those people with acquired immunity than natural immunity. Those with natural immunity or attempting to develop it were 10% more likely to need hospitalization and 11% more likely to die. Scientists and physicians recommend that individuals get immunized even if they believe they have survived exposure to the coronavirus.
Coronavirus Signs and Symptoms
You should be aware of the early coronavirus signs and symptoms so you will know if you need to seek medical help. Early intervention is crucial in severe cases. Some people experience very mild symptoms, and many do not even realize they have contracted the coronavirus. However, others become seriously ill. Symptoms may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure.
These coronavirus signs and symptoms are mild and may not need medical intervention:
- Mild fever or chills
- Loss of taste or smell
- Mild headache
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Mild body aches
If you start to develop more severe symptoms or any of the following symptoms, seek medical help.
- Extreme fatigue, inability to awaken or stay awake
- Severe muscle aches
- Persistent headache
- Nausea or vomiting
- Trouble breathing
- Chest pain or pressure
- New Confusion
- Discolored skin, lips, and nail beds
As the coronavirus mutates, scientists and physicians continue to develop ways to battle the virus. Immunizations have proven to be effective in saving lives. At BASS Urgent Care, we offer PCR testing for active infections. We also have antibody testing for previous exposure to determine if natural immunity or acquired immunity has developed. Contact us at 925.318.9822 to schedule your testing appointment.