5 Facts EVERYONE Should Know About the Delta Variant

5 Facts EVERYONE Should Know About the Delta Variant

(AscendHealthy.com) – The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown us all in unexpected ways. Every time we think we’re getting a handle on this mess, something seems to happen to make the situation just a little worse than before. It wasn’t long ago when we thought we’d finally gained the upper hand, but then new, more powerful mutations suddenly raised the ante.

Experts have followed many variants of interest, but Delta has recently taken center stage as the next possible big threat. Naturally, we all have questions. Here are the latest facts.

1. Delta Is as Contagious as Chickenpox

According to the CDC, mutations have allowed the Delta variant to infect more people faster, making it more than twice as contagious as previous strains of COVID. Experts at Yale Medicine describe this strain’s infection rate as similar to chickenpox, which means minimal exposure is all a person needs to fall ill. Putting the threat in perspective, Delta is more infectious than the flu, SARS, MERS and even Ebola.

2. More People Are at Risk

Because the Delta variant is even easier to catch, high-risk groups are at even greater risk. However, no one is immune to that possible sudden decline toward the ventilator, so everyone should consider this strain a serious personal threat.

Children and adults under 50 years of age are 2.5 times more likely to be infected with the Delta variant, according to Yale Medicine. Regardless of past infection or intervention, no one is guaranteed a pass on this one; all of us may need to be even more careful in the months to come.

3. Delta May Cause Different Symptoms And More Severe Illness

This mutation is less likely to affect the sense of smell or present initially with a cough. Instead, sufferers tend to complain of headaches, fevers, runny nose and throat soreness.

People who develop these symptoms should be aware of the dangers of silent hypoxia and understand that a cough needn’t be present for respiratory distress or other life-threatening symptoms to set in.

The most recent data suggest people who catch the Delta variant are more likely to require hospitalization when compared to patients who caught previous strains.

4. It’s the Current Dominant US Strain

The American Society for Microbiology reports the Delta strain is responsible for over 83% of current US cases. The strain, which likely mutated in India in late 2020, spread to at least 98 countries in mere months. Delta currently also dominates in India, Israel and regions throughout Great Britain.

5. Delta Could Be the Tip of the Iceberg

The Delta variant might be the strongest on everyone’s radar at the moment, but the CDC is currently watching several other mutations of concern. The Alpha variant, first identified in the UK, could rival Delta’s ability to spread and kill. The Beta variant, first seen in South Africa, and the Gamma variant, which may have originated in Japan or Brazil, could spread faster than previous strains, but data on the severity of their infections are still uncertain.

All viruses mutate regularly, and most mutations don’t make their infections any more dangerous than before. COVID-19 variants aren’t any less predictable, but the very nature of this virus is; because it can cause such serious disease in some people, experts must examine every variant for changes that could blindside us all once again.

The Delta variant isn’t the first big mutation to develop from COVID-19, and it certainly won’t be the last, but it may be single-handedly responsible for this latest wave. We could see another massive surge of devastation in the coming months if we don’t remain vigilant and take personal measures to remain safe. Wearing a mask is still the most effective measure each of us can take to help stop the spread.

~Here’s to Your Healthy Ascension

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