General Question

omtatsat's avatar

Will there be a flu epidemic this winter?

Asked by omtatsat (878points) 1 month ago

Experts say the immune system should get used to other germs again. Otherwise, according to infectiologists, there is a risk of a mega flu wave. They recommend the reduction of mask wearing.

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23 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

Pretty good chance of a RISE in flu after last year. Whether it will be an epidemic is open to question.

I had an email from my doc saying that the next time I come in, I should consider getting the annual flu shot.

filmfann's avatar

…according to infectiologists, there is a risk of a mega flu wave. They recommend the reduction of mask wearing.

I don’t understand. They want people to get sick?

Poseidon's avatar

Since Covid struck in the UK there have been very few cases of the flu.

I am assuming it is because of the precautions people have had to take to protect themselves such as the 2 metre rule and the wearing of masks.

If people continue to wear masks as many of them are still doing I don’t see there being a flu epidemic this year.

zenvelo's avatar

Sources, please. This sounds like fake news bullshit.

Doctors are encouraging people to get flu shots as they normally do. At my job, we are having the annual “flu shot fair” next week.

Love_my_doggie's avatar

My own, completely unscientific guess: Yes, we’re about to have a severe cold and flu season. Face masks and social distancing protected us from COVID, along with other illnesses. But, we haven’t had the normal exposure that boosts resistance. It’s now September, yet I know so many people who have already been sick.

JLeslie's avatar

Flu is tracked from Asia and then it travels to Europe and North America and then down to South America. The US always watches Asia to decide what flu strains to put in the vaccines for the upcoming flu season.

According to this https://www.who.int/teams/global-influenza-programme/surveillance-and-monitoring/influenza-updates/current-influenza-update WHO is reporting still low levels of flu in Asia, but the best would be for us to actually look up data for East Asian countries and see their flu numbers this past flu season (just ending now) and 3,4,5 years ago and how it compares.

I think flu in the US will be higher this year than last year in the US since people are flying, cruising internationally, and moving around a lot domestically, but I still expect it to be fewer cases of flu than average years here.

Children are being masked in schools still, airplane travel is still masked, when COVID rises in a community masks and distancing increases. All those things will reduce transmission of flu. That’s assuming flu vaccination stay constant compared to most years also.

That’s my OPINION.

omtatsat's avatar

Yes. Masks protected from other viruses. So the body is not building up immunity. Therefore its recommended to get rid of them. The logic of the ” experts ”

JLeslie's avatar

^^People are still exposed to plenty. Asia has been using masks for years, doctors wear masks a lot of the time.

Positivity rates for covid tests show that people are getting sick with other colds and flu.

zenvelo's avatar

People don’t “build up immunity” from being exposed to flu, other than by getting sick and recovering (if you recover).

Incidence of flu dropped last year because people took all the precautions normally recommended for preventing the spread of flu (washing hands, not touching face, wearing masks, getting flu shots). Where I live, people are still wearing masks in stores and in crowds,

We don’t foresee a flu epidemic here in our future.

Caravanfan's avatar

Immune systems don’t get “used” to germs. We didn’t really see much last year because of lock downs and masks. This year will be different because things are more oen. So yes, there will be more flu. So everybody should get their flu shot.

RocketGuy's avatar

I’ve never heard of “infectiologists”. Are they infection experts with Facebook medical degrees?

Caravanfan's avatar

@RocketGuy They’re the guys who recommend no masks becuase they don’t belive in respiratory transmission.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

I am personally enjoying not having had so much a a sniffle in the last couple of years. As far as I’m concerned masks can be a cultural norm from here on out.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

~ ~ ~ The “infectiologists” got their degree at Trump University !

RocketGuy's avatar

@Blackwater_Park – my allergies have been much better with WFH, aside from my dog bringing in cat hair from the one she chases away every day. Virus will be my excuse for wearing a mask going through airports for a long time. I always considered airports to be particularly germy.

jca2's avatar

@omtatsat: I haven’t seen any recommendations not to wear masks. Do you have a link?

omtatsat's avatar

This recommendation was in Switzerland from an expert

Caravanfan's avatar

@omtatsat I am an expert too. Wear a mask.

jca2's avatar

@omtatsat: Link please. Things from Switzerland have links too.

omtatsat's avatar

@jca2 Here’s the link but its in German. The Health Minister of Switzerland Mr Berset is quoted here as saying ” Wir haben behauptet, dass Masken sogar schädlich sein könnten.”. Translated this means: ” We have claimed that masks could even be harmful.”. He later changed his opinion and said people should wear masks

https://www.srf.ch/news/schweiz/bundesrat-ueber-coronapolitik-berset-ich-habe-die-wissenschaft-anfangs-zu-wenig-hinterfragt

longgone's avatar

@omtatsat German is my native language. Your link does not quote anyone (expert or not) recommending reduced mask wearing.

raum's avatar

@longgone LOL

Wait…is this in general? Am I not allowed to laugh without adding to the dialogue in a meaningful way?

Erm…no, I don’t think there will be a mega-flu wave this year. Seems highly unlikely that our immune system will be crippled from being careful the last two years or so.

JLeslie's avatar

US flu map. You can toggle to previous years if you want to compare. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/usmap.htm Some states are creeping up a little. Remember year 2020/2021 is an aberration of very low flu cases because of covid.

Europe seems to be low as well so far. https://flunewseurope.org/

Of course, we have only just begun. Late November, December, January, February are the real tests.

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