Social Distancing and Its Effects - Pros & Cons of Physical Distancing
Social Distancing- Pros and Cons of Social Distancing: Social distancing is maintaining an appropriate distance or gap between people. This action is taken to prevent the spread of airborne viruses or contagious diseases. The Health Ministry has the legal authority to carry out social distancing measures depending on the severity and prevalence of a particular disease.
Action to start social distancing measures is coordinated with local agencies such as cities, police departments & schools, as well as with state and other legal authorities.
What are social Distancing Measures?
Social distancing measures are taken to restrict when and where people can gather to stop or slow the spread of infectious diseases. This measure is implemented to stop the contagion that can multiply through different modes of transmission. Social distancing measures include limiting large groups of people coming together, closing buildings, cancelling events, etc.
Why is Social Distancing Necessary?
It is essential to slow or halt the spread of a viral outbreak because the spread of disease follows mass gatherings such as conferences and festivals. During pandemics like COVID-19, the highest infection rates are observed in crowded places.
Closed contacts are the easiest mode of the airborne virus to travel from one infected carrier to an uninfected person. This way a virus can easily affect its host without reflecting any preliminary symptoms.
Social Distancing is the only solution to stop the spread when there is no solution or antidote to cure a particular disease. Health experts may need some time to prepare an effective antidote to fight the infections.
What is Physical Distancing?
Physical Distancing is somewhat relatable to Social Distancing. Both of these practices can be enforced or volunteered. Physical distancing involves keeping away from tangible objects and things next to humans. In the case of a pandemic, every human needs to avoid direct physical contact with anything that can spread the viral infection acting as a medium.
Given the fact that viruses and bacteria follow a chain reaction by spreading in multiplicity. If an infected person coughs or sneezes the droplets sit on another person in the vicinity. A virus can attack people within a 6-feet distance.
A virus can stay stable for hours on objects as explained in a study by the National Institutes of Health. This virus has a tendency to stay active for up to 3 hours in aerosols, up to 4 hours on copper, 24 hours on cardboard, and up to 3 days on plastic and stainless steel.
Examples of Social Distancing
- Shutting Down Schools and Institutions.
- Closing Companies and Manufacturing Units
- Shutting the Public Transport System
- Closing all the Houses of Worship
What are the advantages of Social Distancing?
With fewer people to contact, chances of getting infected are the least. You can stay safe from the invisible threat and are more assured that you can’t affect others surrounding you inside your homes.
Preparation for Worst Case Scenario
Yes, social distancing prepares you for the worst which is the next phase of an infection's widespread. Isolation and Quarantine come next to social distancing which means you restrict your contact with humans. This situation may be enforced or voluntary in order to protect yourself and others from getting affected. During isolation, you can receive medical treatment at your home or a specialized healthcare facility.
Movement is Unrestricted
Unlike Isolation and Quarantine states, your movement is not restricted within the secure area. You can still meet & greet people and your loved ones maintaining a distance of at least 2 meters (6 feet) whilst continuing the communication.
Staying updated with Internet and Media
Social distancing in real life means you can express your concerns and opinions through online media. Staying in touch with remote technology is on high priority at times when a pandemic turns into a global concern. Media is the most reliable platform to spread awareness about a situation or incident and guidelines to follow to educate others.
You have Time to Plan Ahead
For the time being, you can plan your next moves to sort the problem on your part. Social distancing is a preliminary action that you voluntarily take to avoid future lapse. It is important to contain the widespread of an outbreak so as to avoid a social emergency.
You can spot Symptoms in othersWith a maintained distance from others, you can spot an infected or symptomatic person and take necessary action without being affected.
What are the Disadvantages of Social Distancing?
Impact on Business or Industries
Social Distancing directly impacts the building and manufacturing sector. Offices, where people are to work with their team, are majorly affected by this behavioral practice. If enforced by the law, people with daily wages must be compensated for the loss of their time and lack of employment during a crisis.
Where employees with daily wages get no benefit from this practice, companies also become vulnerable to lose their grip on the market with low production and less income generation.
Absence of Affection
No Hugs, No kisses, no handshakes may sound a bit harsh at the time of social distancing, but in order to protect yourself, and contain the spread of an infection, this is the right move to make. A satisfactory point is that you can still stay in touch with your family even if you are not able to share the dining table with your loved ones. For some people keeping no close contacts is a pill hard to swallow; prefer to greet in different and unique ways, For example, say Namaste/Namaskar (An Indian Traditional Way to Greet from a distance) with a humble gesture.
Stages after Social Distancing: Isolation and Quarantine