Coronavirus Fear: Two Sides of the Same Coin

Fear is a very, very natural reaction to the unknown and the unknowable. It’s is part of our survival mechanism. It keeps us from jumping off of cliffs to see if we can hit the water 100 feet below and avoid the rocks. It keeps us from wanting to pet alligators on the nose. Or getting too close to a lion’s cage. So be very thankful for normal, healthy fear. Now, if we let fears get the best of us and turn small anxieties into massive panic attacks, then we have pull ourselves back from that abyss because then fear becomes the thing to fear. With unfounded fears, we need to use common sense. We may not like to admit it but there will be 1,600 Americans that die today from heart disease. That happens every day. The numbers of chronic illness deaths that are reversible are staggering but there are no headlines. Why? Because we hear about heart disease risk factors for years or decades before we encounter it. And there are natural lifestyle changes and medicines to choose from to treat it.

At last count in a country of 330,000,000 sadly, 14 people have died. In the entire world, there have been 102,471 cases out of 7,000,000,000 people with 57,462 who have recovered fully with 80% of cases are mild to very mild and most don’t seek medical help. Total deaths in the entire world, 3,491 as of 8.14 this morning according to the Johns Hopkins CSSE.

coronavirus

This makes it appear that the death rate is a little over 3% but it’s much less than that due to the number of mild cases that aren’t reported or tracked. In South Korea, the fatality rates is 0.65% or less than 1% and this is because they have been testing longer. So be aware with millions of test kits being delivered you can expect the number of cases to go way up. But the fatality percentages will go way down. Here’s something to remember:

I must not fear

Do all the common sense things of thinking correctly, staying hydrated, eating well. Build up your immune system through these common sense tips. 

We’ll get through this. Remember the media’s job is to get your attention, which means they get better stats when they putting scary headlines out. 

In Maryland where I live, I could feel the enthusiasm of the local media when the very first cases were discovered in our state yesterday. The story was “First cases of coronavirus appears in Maryland. Governor issues state of emergency. Gov. Hogan taps 55 million dollars from state’s rainy day fund.” In the actual story, it’s reported the couple who tested positive are elderly but at home and doing well, but that is not in the headline. So don’t give into unfounded fears. Remember 26 million people will get the flu this year. But that happens every year. The opposite of fear is faith. The opposite of placebo is nocebo. Be pragmatic and practical about this and don’t worry much. And lest you forget wash your hands while humming Happy Birthday twice. That will serve you well. 

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