Alpha, Beta and Gamma-All of these are examples of Covid-19 variants we may have heard of.
Alpha variants for example were first detected in England in September 2020. Beta and Gamma variants were detected in South Africa and Brazil.
Recently, there is a new variant, the Delta variant, which started in India.
But, what does the Covid-19 variant mean and why is it so dangerous?
To your knowledge, viruses are constantly undergoing changes through mutations. Because of this process, new variants will appear and some will disappear.
However, the Covid-19 mutation has its own dangers.
Through the process of mutation, the Covid-19 variant will undergo changes that allow it to spread more rapidly or become resistant to the vaccine.
However, no Covid-19 variant is more worrisome than the Delta variant. Now, this variant has spread to nearly 100 different countries and led to an increase in Covid-19 cases and hospital admissions.
In fact, this variant has also become the dominant variant in the United Kingdom and the United States. However, what is the difference between the Delta variant and other variants?
- Delta variants are easier to spread than other variants
The Delta variant or also known as B.1.617.2 is the first Covid-19 mutation detected in India.
Nicknamed ‘the fastest and the fittest’, the CDC has acted to label Delta as a variant of concern (VOC) in mid -June.
The Delta variant has several features that make it different from other Covid-19 viruses, namely:
- Has a higher rate of infectiousness.
- Able to ‘stick’ more strongly to lung cell nerves.
- Able to reduce the response of monoclonal antibodies.
- In addition, the Delta variant can also spread more easily in enclosed areas such as homes and offices.
In fact, according to data from Public Health England, patients infected with this variant are 1.8 times more likely to be hospitalized than those infected with the Alpha variant.
Not only that, according to Yale Medicine, the original Covid-19 virus could infect 2.5 other people (provided no one was vaccinated or wore a face mask).
However, the Delta variant can spread and infect 3.5 to 4 other people – Almost 2 times more than the original virus!
- Don’t want to take the vaccine? You are more at risk!
The Delta variant is particularly dangerous for individuals who have not been vaccinated or have not yet completed vaccination.
Not only that, this variant is also found to be more dangerous to children and adolescents. In fact, they are also 2.5 times more likely to get a Covid-19 infection with this variant.
Those infected with the Delta variant also show a number of different symptoms. Among them are:
- Hearing loss
- Joint pain
- Loss of appetite
The above signs are also slightly different from previous Covid-19 symptoms.
- Delta variants can cause massive infections
Due to its high infectious rate, it is not impossible that Delta variants can spread rapidly.
After all, according to a study published in the journal medRxiv, individuals infected with the Delta variant have 1,000 times more virus in their airways than patients infected with the common Covid-19 virus.
Plus, after a person is infected with a Delta variant, they can spread the virus more quickly.
Individuals infected with this variant only need 4 days, 2 days shorter than usual to infect others.
- Not only that, there is also a Delta Plus variant!
The Delta Plus variant is another expert concern. This variant found in the United States and the United Kingdom has another unique mutation addition.
This mutation, also known as K417N, affects nail proteins that are on the surface of the virus.
This nail protein helps the virus to enter the human body more easily and can lower the effectiveness of the vaccine!
- Vaccination is the best protection against Delta
The best way to get protection from Delta variants is to get vaccinated.
If you get a 2-dose vaccine such as AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech and Sinovac, you will need to get both vaccines and wait 2 weeks after vaccination for maximum effectiveness.
According to the WHO, the vaccine that has been tested is effective and can protect individuals from any variant of Covid-19.
In fact, the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine can also provide 88% protection against Delta variants after full vaccination.
At the same time, we still have to do social imprisonment, constantly wash our hands and wear face masks in public.
Even though we have been vaccinated, there are still other individuals who have not completed their vaccinations. In fact, some may not be able to take the vaccine for certain reasons.
Therefore, make sure you take care of yourself and practice personal hygiene.
Avoid being in public places and make sure you are in a well -ventilated building.
At this time, Covid-19 is still in our country. In fact, the cases that have reached 5 figures a day also prove that our country is badly hit by this epidemic.
Therefore, we must act to protect ourselves from this viral infection:
- Only get out of the house when necessary.
- Go out just to get the basics.
- Keep adopting new norms.
- Do not delay vaccination.
- Wear two face masks (double-masking).
- Encourage others to adopt the new norms.