• Cause of the summer Covid surge
  • Latest variants spreading across Arizona
  • Updated CDC and ADHS guidelines

COVID: A Personal Story

I wish I were writing this from an abstract position—one where I'm talking about the data instead of living a case study.

A few weeks ago, I was at a potluck. Little did we know, one of the guests brought more to the party than that quart of potato salad we all enjoyed. A day later, word spread faster than the virus: that friend came up hot for COVID.

Summer Covid Surge Across Arizona
Summer gatherings and travel have contributed to the rise in Covid cases. // Canva

She felt terrible about it. The entire party was reeling and searching memories trying to recall if we'd been close to our friend.

Of course we were! We're a friendly group.

Laughter and hugs had been exchanged among everyone, and we knew: there was likely no one at the gathering who hadn't been exposed.

A day later, a test revealed the truth: I had the Dreaded 'Vid. I braced myself for at least two weeks of misery. The first time I had the virus, I spent almost a week in bed, drinking fluids, taking medication, and trying to keep my head from exploding. The next week was a slightly better blur, masks, and social distancing.

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Fortunately, this new version of the virus was far less painful than our first dance. During the first two days, while I had a fever, I felt pretty rough. Aside from some upper respiratory symptoms and a cough, though, I rallied much faster than the first time around.

READ MORE: Is Arizona Prepared? What the New COVID-19 Variant Means

The New Surge Hitting Arizona

This is the world we live in now. We go through annual cold and flu seasons, and now, it seems, we have an annual COVID season.

Summer Covid Surge Across Arizona
Symptoms are not as bad as they were with these Covid variants, compared to the past. // Canva

While COVID isn't being tracked and reported as it was in previous years, health agencies are still tracking cases logged in doctor's offices and health centers. In June, the Arizona Department of Health Services reported a 78% increase in cases compared to May. 81% of the cases are in Arizona's most populated area, Maricopa County.

The latest variants circling Arizona are the KP.3 and KP.2 variants. Descendants of the highly contagious JN.1 variant, the new kids on the block account for more than half the current infections across Arizona.

READ MORE: Is Arizona Prepared? What the New COVID-19 Variant Means

Thankfully, adverse effects and hospitalizations are very low right now. Experts believe recent travel and summer gatherings contributed to the sudden spike in cases. The good news is Arizona is well below average for COVID infections for this time of year.

Summer Covid Surge Across Arizona
Thankfully, hospitalizations are down, compared to years past. // Canva

New Guidelines on COVID Procedures in Arizona

The CDC safety guidelines for social distancing, masking, and hygiene have all changed recently. The ADHS has the latest recommendations on their website. It's best to check with your employer or school to find out what your options are if you get sick.

Summer Covid Surge Across Arizona
A new vaccine will be available in the fall. // Canva

READ MORE: New CDC Guidelines for Covid Isolation Could Affect Arizona

The best advice for getting over COVID is the same as any of the common viruses that go around every year: stay away from people, rest, drink clear fluids, and don't return to your daily activities until you're fully recovered.

Sources:CDC Updated Covid Guidelines | WebMD | Arizona Department of Health Services

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Answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

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Keep reading to discover answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions.

Gallery Credit: Stephanie Parker

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