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How is Swine Flu Different from COVID 19 and What are the Protection Measures?

Published On Nov 23, 2020 5:30 AM By Sakshi Aggarwal

The coronavirus disease or COVID19 is an infectious disease that affects a person's respiratory tract and compromises the immune system. People affected by coronavirus experience mild to moderate discomfort in respiratory functions. The common symptoms are cold, fever, headache, sore throat, affected senses like smell and taste. People who have any underlying disorders like diabetes, heart or kidney diseases, cancer, etc. are prone to higher risks of getting affected. This coronavirus has created havoc and turned into a pandemic within months. As this is a viral infection and can be transferred through touch and air, we cannot control its transmission.

Like COVID19, one such pandemic world faced earlier in 2009. That pandemic was caused by the H1N1 virus and was named Swine flu. People who consumed affected pork got contracted by Swine flu and transmitted to other people.

How COVID 19 is Different from Swine Flu?

As both of these pandemics have made history, let us see how they are different from each other:

1. Mortality Rate: Although both diseases caused a worldwide pandemic, COVID 19 has the worst effect on humanity. The death rate of COVID 19 is higher than that of Swine flu. According to Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus research center, more than 212,000 Americans died of COVID 19 while according to CDC reports, 12,469 died due to the Swine flu outbreak in 2009.

2. Affected Age Group: Covid-19 severely affects old people and people who have pre-existing medical conditions like diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, etc. In comparison, the Swine flu affected youth and children majorly. The 80% of deaths that occurred due to Swine flu was of people were adolescents or young adults.

3. Response to Antiviral Drugs: H1N1 virus causing Swine flu was seen to have a better response towards already existing antiviral drugs to treat flu. So people who were in contact with H1N1 affected individuals were given these antiviral drugs. These drugs prevented the spread of the virus. Whereas in the case of COVID 19, no drug showed improving results. So already existing drugs could not prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

4. Incubation Period: The incubation period for the H1N1 virus is of 1 day to 1 week. During this short period, an individual can know if they have contracted swine flu while in the case of COVID 19, it takes weeks for the symptoms to appear. Also, some of the cases of coronavirus were found asymptomatic who also spread the virus.

How Can We Protect Ourselves from COVID19?

The spread of coronavirus can be regulated by preventing its transmission. We need to take these safety measures to prevent the transmission of the virus. Follow the steps mentioned below:

1. Wash your hand regularly with soap and water. If washing hands is not possible, then you should sanitize your hands frequently.

2. Practice social distancing when in public. Avoid unnecessary travelling or taking public transport. If you have to visit any public place, keep a safe distance, and do not touch any surfaces like walls, railing, doorknobs, etc. with bare hands. Even if you touch these surfaces, sanitize your hands immediately after use.

3. Wear fabric or cloth masks whenever you go out. This could curb the spread of the virus. If you start coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth.

4. Avoid smoking as this affects the tissue of the lungs. Coronavirus damages these weakened lung tissues and causes difficulty in breathing.

5. Practice physical activities regularly as physical training would boost immunity and help us to fight such a deadly virus.

Also Read: Steps to Stop the Spread of Coronavirus


COVID 19 has affected our lifestyle to a greater extent. We cannot stop the disease from spreading but practicing these safety measures can prevent us from getting affected by the coronavirus. Health insurance is also very important to tackle the spread of these diseases.

Disclaimer: This article is issued in the general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

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