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The Real Reason Why Social Distancing is so Important during COVID-19

Social Distancing. This term has probably never been used much until February 2020.

Scientifically, it means a set of non-pharmaceutical intervention measures taken to prevent the spread of a contagious disease by maintaining a physical distance between people and reducing the number of times people come into close contact with each other.

Simply, it means to stay home as much as possible and to avoid contact with people other than your immediate family. I would say, however, that we should be calling this Physical Distancing instead, as have many governments and organizations across the world. Because more than ever, we must socially engage with each other.

Now that we are on this topic of physical distancing, why is it important to do it? Why do government and health officials get on TV every day, just to tell us to stay home and practice physical distancing? Because it’s important. COVID 19 is a highly contagious disease, and in order to minimize its spread, it’s important to stay home as much as possible, and of course, maintain proper hygiene.

By staying home, we are helping all the frontline workers who are risking their lives to help those who have been affected. By staying home, we are helping to stop the spread of germs in public places. By staying home, we are helping to contain the virus, in hopes that it will go away.

This disease won’t just go away itself. It will take the effort of every single individual in every single community to put an end to this pandemic.

COVID- 19 spreads, just as dominos fall. A domino falls only when it is pushed by the one behind it. But if you take one domino out of the set, the ones after it stop falling. Similarly, this virus can easily spread when an individual unnecessarily decides to go outside in public.

Image visualizing the Domino Effect and the Coronavirus. Image courtesy of the Octane Blog

Staying home can make all the difference. Yes, social distancing means that you can’t see your friends face-to-face, or go to the mall, or go play in a park. But just because you lose something, doesn’t mean you can’t gain something else. COVID 19 has given a lot of us something new - time. Time with our families at home. Time to start up that hobby you’ve been longing to do at home. Time to reflect on our lives at home.

Our decision of whether or not to stay home will be the deciding factor on how quickly we will be able to end this pandemic.

Article Contributors: Risha Shah and Asima Hudani