As the coronavirus continues to remain a major threat, many countries have started to impose new rules and regulations that seek to prevent or hinder COVID-19 from infecting new people. Among these measures, we can count self-imposed quarantine, social-distancing, and the closures of specific public places.
Citizens were also encouraged to take specific precautions to keep themselves safe, and many people continue to wear masks and gloves when they have to go out for a variety of reasons.
A team of researchers from Japan argues that the pandemic may impact seasonal influenza (flu) transmissions, with lower overall rates. There are several factors that may contribute to this, including the measures which were mentioned at the start of the article.
Coronavirus measures lowered the incidence of flu
From the start of the pandemic, a significant number of people have started to wash their hands more often, employ sanitizers, and use social distancing. While such strategies appear to be common-sense, studies have already shown that they can be quite effective at preventing the spread of viral diseases, with flu being one of them.
COVID-19 and flu share some infection vectors as both can spread via droplets released by coughing and sneezing. Many droplets can persist long enough to land on surfaces and contaminating them. Hand washing and sanitization are now common, which is a major change in comparison to the time before the pandemic when many people used to be less careful.
Select groups of people are also more likely to acquire infections in comparison to others. Several studies have shown that school children are more likely to contract flu, with a high rate being observed every year during the flu season.
Many schools have been closed around the world, limiting the spread of flu among children. Social distancing has also played an important role as people kept a reasonable distance between themselves, and remote work has been adopted by many companies.