Role Of Immunity Against COVID-19
Article by Dr. Nitin Gurav
Recently people heard of COVID-19; however, Coronaviruses have been known for over five decades. On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization identified COVID-19 as a Global Emergency. The whole world saw the steps taken by governments of various countries to break the chain of infection. We experienced a global lockdown that will go down in history as an unfortunate event of the modern era.
Why Breaking the chain is difficult?
Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 are not much different from a common cough and cold; until it progresses into advanced stages where patients suffer from ARDS. Just like all other respiratory infections, COVID-19 spreads through “Droplet Transmission”. If anyone has respiratory symptoms (e.g. sneeze or cough), then people within a 1-meter radius to this patient are more susceptible to get the infection due to droplet transmission. In countries where the urban areas or metro cities have higher population density, it is tough to maintain social distancing.
Does Oral Hygiene play any role in COVID-19?
This pandemic has changed our perceptions of hygiene and sanitation. There are studies conducted across the globe which are showing evidence that good oral hygiene practices may reduce the risk of complications in COVID-19. As we know that currently, we do not have any treatment for the disease and the focus is around building strong immunity. As rightly said, “Your oral health affects your overall health”. To maintain a robust immune system, we need to maintain proper oral hygiene.
Gingivitis or periodontal diseases cause bacterial overabundance in the mouth. With the increase in the count of the bacteria, the immune system is triggered to attack the bacteria. This leads to the continuous focus of the immune system on oral infections. Over the period it causes the exertion of the immune system leading to reduced immunity.
How can I keep my Immune System strong?
Keeping the immune system strong requires healthy lifestyle choices along with good oral hygiene practices.
Healthy lifestyle choices include regular exercise, minimal stress, maintaining a healthy weight, getting adequate sleep, a healthy diet, etc. Good oral hygiene practices include daily 2 times brushing the teeth, flossing, and visiting your dentist regularly.
What does Ayurveda say about Oral health?
Ayurveda revolves around Tridoshas i.e. Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Each of the Tridoshas has 5 subtypes. Bodhak Kapha is one of the five subtypes of Kapha that correlates with oral mucosa. Primarily it regulates oral bacteria and boosts immunity. When we care for oral hygiene; ultimately it leads to boost immunity.
Ayurvedic Concept of Immunity
People are stressed with lockdown and increasing counts of the patients. In such a scenario, people will find comfort in traditional practices like yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda that have been followed in India for ages. These practices are affordable and have large scale acceptability along with a factor of creating positive energy for the masses. A stress-free environment leads to boosting immunity to a new level which is the need for an hour.