Though there were warning signs that an outbreak was about to occur, the COVID-19 pandemic was a shock to the world. It seemed to have come out of nowhere. This is probably due to allegations that in the beginning, Chinese officials had concealed the extent of the coronavirus; and also, the number of COVID-19 patients had exponentially exploded as soon as the people who were infected with the virus began to travel outside the borders of ground zero (a starting point or base where the infection occurred). 

“The explosion of COVID-19 cases in China was largely driven by individuals with mild, limited, or no symptoms who went undetected,” Jeffrey Shaman, a professor of environmental health sciences at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health stated in a statement. Shaman is a co-author of a study that was recently published in a journal by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The study revealed that “people with COVID-19 who didn’t get diagnosed, likely because they didn’t feel very sick, were the source of at least two-thirds of documented COVID-19 cases in China in the early days of the outbreak.”

Whether it is from a common cold or a deadly disease, we all have the fear of getting sick. Though the fear of a common cold is less stressful compared to the fear of getting COVID-19. There are over-the-counter medications that can quickly cure you of a cold but we don’t currently have a cure for the coronavirus. Without the stay at home order government officials had mandated during the beginning of the virus and the social distancing practices, experts agree that the reported cases of COVID-19 would have been incredibly worse.  

 “We’re seeing a decline; undoubtedly, that is something good to see,” Prof. Jeffrey Shaman previously said to the New York Times. “But what we are also seeing is a lot of places right on the edge of controlling the disease.” 

COVID-19 forced us to change our behaviors. Along with the practice of staying home and social distancing, other behavior changes the virus caused include frequently washing our hands and wearing facial masks in public. 

“Uncertainty is all around us, never more so than today. The current COVID-19 pandemic has heightened uncertainty over the economy, employment, finances, relationships, and of course, physical and mental health,” Lawrence Robinson and Melinda Smith, M.A. said in an article published in Help Guide.

What’s the one good thing about COVID19?

Another way the virus has changed human behavior is that we are listening to our bodies more than ever. According to the Center for Disease Control, the early signs that a person may have the virus include: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, the new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea. Some may have the virus and may not show any symptoms at all. The stress of the pandemic is forcing us to continuously look to see if we and our loved ones have any symptoms of the virus.

Health experts have been arguing for decades for us to pay more attention to our bodies and it’s only now that most of us are listening. In addition to being aware of the symptoms of COVID-19, we should also continue to pay attention to other health indicators our body gives off that may suggest something is wrong. Here are three important indicators that may suggest something is wrong with our bodies.

Sleeping Habits 

One of the early signs that something is not right with your body is insomnia. It can be caused by stress, mental illness, breathing issues, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and even menopause. The recommended hours of sleep are between six to eight hours. Anything less may hint of a health issue any also, sleeping all day can suggest a mental health issue such as depression.

Experiencing Pain

As we get older the body naturally experiences pain from wear and tear. You may not be as flexible as you used to be when you were a teenager but a continuous back pain is a sign that something is wrong. 

Food and Appetite

Healthy foods are the body’s first line of defense in combating diseases. Healthy foods provide our immune system the fuel to fight off diseases. When we don’t eat properly or when we lose our appetite, we become more susceptible to getting sick.

Researchers are working on finding a vaccine with a reported 100 possible vaccines currently being tested but a possible vaccine would not likely be available until the late fall 2020 or sometime in 2021. The best way to fight COVID-19 is to not get it and by continuing to pay attention to what our body is telling us.