Do you know the differences between an epidemic and a pandemic? An epidemic is a disease that affects a wide area and most people fall sick at the same time. A pandemic, on the other hand, is a disease that affects a wider geographical area and people in the world contract it. The World Health Organization (WHO) recently changed the designation of COVID-19 from an epidemic to a pandemic. This is because coronavirus has spread to a global extent.
Drug abuse, for instance, is an epidemic. Drug overdose deaths continue to affect people in the United States. Statistics show that between 1999 and 2017, around 702,000 people in the United States died from an overdose of drugs. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction during this pandemic, consider reaching out to an addiction treatment center for telehealth services.
Epidemic vs. Pandemic
The coronavirus outbreak continues to increase in countries across the world. The cases and deaths continue to rise each day. The WHO announcement of coronavirus as a pandemic might not provide a cure to the virus but may encourage people to take the issue more seriously.
Crises in the global health sector tend to grow in phases. The chain of events begins as an outbreak. A good example is a rise in infection cases of a disease in a small area such as Wuhan. As the disease spreads across a large geographical area such as China, it becomes an epidemic. Pandemics are epidemics that affect different countries and cause deaths among people across the world. Not all epidemics that spread across international boundaries become pandemics. The coronavirus spreads easily to different parts of the country making it hard to control.
What Makes Drug Abuse an Epidemic?
Substance use disorder is incredibly common in the United States. The opioid epidemic has led to an increased number of hospitalizations and deaths. Opioids include analogs, illicit drugs, and prescriptions. Drug overdose is the top cause of accidental deaths in America.
However, when thinking about epidemic vs pandemic, drug abuse is still considered an epidemic. This is because the effects of drug overdose do not spread across boundaries and to other countries across the world. Cases of drug abuse are common since many years ago. The crisis has had a large effect on the United States but is a minor problem in other countries. Drug overdose is a gradual problem that causes deaths over time.
For those who are struggling with drug addiction, however, there is help available. Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, you can access drug and alcohol addiction treatment through telehealth services, which can include video conferencing and therapy sessions over the phone.
What Is the Significance of Coronavirus as a Pandemic?
A pandemic means that the responsible authorities find it difficult to contain the continued spread of the virus. They result in mitigation strategies such as canceling mass gatherings and closing schools. Some countries even go as far as implementing a lock-down. This causes fear among the people.
To contain the pandemic, it is important to follow various tips. These include:
- Connecting safely: Check on your friends and family through the phone. Speak to them and encourage each other on the situation
- Having faith that the problem will end: Remember that this situation is not permanent. Things will soon change for the better
- Practicing self-care activities: Evaluate the activities that help you relax and engage in them. These may include yoga, exercising, or reading books
- Keeping calm and avoiding blame games: The situation might seem irreversible but it does not help to point fingers
- Taking the proper precautions: Listen to what health authorities recommend you to do. Wash your hands regularly and stay safe throughout this period
Get Through the Coronavirus Pandemic Safely
It is important to differentiate between an epidemic vs. pandemic. Although the coronavirus has been labeled a pandemic, you can stay safe by following social distancing guidelines. Take the necessary precautions and see a doctor if you feel symptoms.
At San Antonio Recovery Center, we offer telehealth services to help clients get through the coronavirus pandemic safely while still receiving the treatment they need. Contact us at 866.957.7885 to learn more.