The COVID-19 crisis has continued to pose a threat to the health and lives of people. Almost 300 million COVID-19 cases with more than five million deaths get reported worldwide. Sure, there are ongoing mass vaccination and clinical trials performed for COVID-19 drugs and treatments. However, while the pandemic is here to stay, we must not become lenient and complacent.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, old people and those with underlying medical conditions are vulnerable to the COVID-19 infection. When infected with the novel coronavirus, they are most likely to get hospitalized, need extensive care, and require a ventilator to breathe. If left unattended, they might eventually die.
To protect health from the COVID-19 infection, here are the top underlying health conditions people must be wary of:
1. Chronic Lung Disease
People suffering from chronic lung diseases must not take their health for granted during these unprecedented times. On top of these diseases is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including emphysema and chronic bronchitis. However, even those with asthma (moderate to severe), bronchiectasis (thick lungs airways), cystic fibrosis, and pulmonary embolism (lungs’ blood clot) must be very careful. As the novel coronavirus hit the respiratory system the hardest, those with chronic lung diseases must end up in critical conditions.
2. Serious Heart Condition
People with severe heart conditions are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 infection. Heart diseases come in various types. The most common is coronary artery disease (CAD), which can decrease blood flow and lead to a heart attack. Those with high blood pressure and high cholesterol are also at risk of heart diseases. That said, consider getting an open MRI scanner to check your heart condition and get the necessary medications and treatments. But for the most part, it all boils down to living a healthy lifestyle.
3. Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes is a common debilitating health condition affecting many people worldwide. Diabetes type 2 is the most concerning, where a person’s body doesn’t use insulin and regulates the sugar level. On the other hand, diabetes type 1 is an autoimmune reaction that prevents insulin production in the body. In addition, take note of gestational diabetes (for pregnant women) and prediabetes (for people whose sugar levels are higher than usual). People with diabetes must be careful with their health as they can get severely ill when infected with the novel coronavirus.
4. Chronic Kidney Disease
People with chronic kidney diseases must not neglect their health at all. This disease affects people whose kidneys become damaged and can no longer filter blood. As a result, excess fluid and blood wastes don’t get flushed out of the body. This disease can escalate to various health issues such as heart diseases. Know that kidney disease is the leading cause of mortality in the US. When matched with COVID-19 infection, these numbers may even be growing.
5. Immunocompromised Health Conditions
People with health conditions causing them to be immune-compromised must be cautious during this pandemic. As the name suggests, immunocompromised means that a person’s immune system is low. The system cannot protect the body and fight off infections. On top of these are people who are undergoing cancer treatments. When infected with the COVID-19 disease, they can quickly perish. The same is true for people with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Obesity includes those people with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more. Apparently, obese individuals already suffer from various health illnesses such as cardiovascular diseases, heart conditions, and even diabetes. The COVID-19 pandemic restrictions can even lead to a sedentary lifestyle. This lifestyle can all the more compromise their overall health and well-being. When infected with the novel coronavirus, they may not live and survive.
While pregnancy can be an exciting time of your life, it can be scary to have this during this pandemic. Why? When COVID-19-infected, pregnant women are more likely to get severely ill than those who are not pregnant. Also, they are more likely to end up with preterm birth. The best course of action is to have protection by observing health and safety measures. Also, be sure to nourish yourself and your baby and boost your immune system. Lastly, consult your doctor and keep up with your prenatal care despite the pandemic restrictions.
At this point, you now know what underlying medical conditions are susceptible to the novel coronavirus. Take note of the health conditions and diseases outlined above, from chronic lung disease to type 2 diabetes to pregnancy. If you or your loved one is suffering from one of these health conditions, take extra precautions and get the necessary protection from the COVID-19 infection. Be sure to consult with a doctor or health professional regularly. In the end, it’s better to be safe than sorry!