COVID-19 Third Wave – Things We Know So Far

Written by Dr. Veena Madhankumar and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team

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COVID-19 has been continuing relentlessly for the last one and a half years. And in almost all countries around the world, there have been periods of a surge. The second wave spread so fast in some countries that it was humanly not possible to get control over it. Having failed to adequately prepare for the second wave, health experts and national authorities are now warning people about the possibility of a third wave. Though its timing and severity cannot be predicted, it is considered inevitable. These health experts strongly suggest that the intensity of this third wave can be reduced with strong measures and proper guidelines. We have listed some important information you need to know about the third wave to handle it better.

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1) Severity of The Third Wave

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The second wave was devastating with its rapid progression and severity. Studies showed that the Delta variants spread rapidly and can easily bind to the lung receptors. These variants are also resistant to monoclonal antibody therapies. So health experts doubt if the third wave will be worse than the previous in countries where the vaccine coverage or exposure rates are low. Scientists and doctors agree that the only way to prevent an exponential increase in COVID cases and for it to not be as devastating in the near future is by following preventive measures (handwashing, masks, and social distance).

2) The Third Wave May Not Affect Children More

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In countries that saw a massive second wave, such as India, more children, who were once considered less affected, got infected more. The manner of the infections and the surge in cases made everyone believe that the upcoming wave will be detrimental for children. However, it might not be the case as there is no scientific evidence to prove the same. Health experts also stress that even if a third wave affects children and teenagers, it will only be a milder form of the disease. Meaning, they can recuperate easily and will have better recovery rates.

 
 

3) Will Vaccines Be Less Effective Against the New Variants?

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New variants are emerging, and the current vaccines are found to be less effective, especially against the Delta variant. The same goes for the Delta plus variant, which carries a genetic code from the Delta variant. So there is a lot of study going on whether booster doses or additional vaccine shots are required to garner higher immunity against the deadly virus and its variants.

If we can reduce the transmission by proper individual behavior and higher vaccination numbers, we can easily ward off the danger that any wave may pose in the future. All that we need to do is to stay alert and follow safe behavior so that we can reduce the virus circulation and chances of random mutations leading to the emergence of new variants.

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