Pandemic vs Epidemic
In the current world where Ebola virus is making headlines, knowing the difference between pandemic and epidemic can be of advantage. Epidemic is an outbreak of a contagious disease that spreads rapidly and extensively and affecting many individuals simultaneously in an area or a population. (e.g: cholera). Pandemic is an epidemic over a wide geographic area and affecting a large proportion of the population. (e.g., AIDS or Swine flu). Both pandemic and epidemic are used as nouns as well as adjectives. Though at once they seem to be the same as word structure of both epidemic and pandemic is somewhat similar, there is a clear difference between the meaning of epidemic and pandemic.
More about Epidemic and Pandemic…
Epidemics and pandemics are infectious diseases that spread over a large number of people and could at times curb human life. In the past, there had been several records to prove the infections affecting a minority as well as a large population. This is where the difference between epidemic and pandemic diseases comes into the picture. In layman terms, epidemic diseases can be termed as an infection that is found in a number of people at the same time (number of people infected will be comparatively less). Disease could be anything related to illness, body pain, fever, etc. An example for epidemic disease is cholera.
When is a disease termed pandemic? It is when the number of people affected by the disease does not constraint to a locality. (A relatively huge number of populations will be affected)It could be across states and countries as well. A perfect example of a pandemic disease will be AIDS. This has become a global threat since eighties. An epidemic disease when affected should be given proper care, treatment and vaccinations need to be given at the right time to prevent an epidemic from becoming a pandemic disease.
Some of such incidents which shook the world over the years are Antonine- smallpox (165-180), Plague of Cyprian (251-266) ,Black Death (1300s), AIDS since 1980s, Typhus (1501-1587 ) ,Cholera (1899-1923),Cholera (1829-1851), Influenza (1889-1892) ,Spanish Flu (1918 – 1920),Influenza (1732-1733 ),Plague of Justinian (541), Swine Influenza (2009),Influenza (1775-1776), Cholera (1852-1860),Influenza (1857-1859),Cholera (1816-1826) ,Cholera (1863-1875),Influenza (1847-1848),Bubonic Plague 1855),El Tor – cholera (1960s).
These diseases are a threat to human life. Several new diseases have been found in the recent years and one such disease is swine flu. At the early stages, it started as epidemic and now it has turned to be a pandemic disease. In spite of several researches and developments for finding a vaccine for flu, through the years this disease has taken lives of several people all around the world. Even now there is no proper treatment for this disease.
Are you aware of how these diseases are transmitted? If you are not then, you need to know this. Epidemic and pandemic diseases are spread by partial or direct contact with the infected. It could be through water and food, sneeze, cough, saliva, etc.
A proper hygiene life could keep one away from at least some of these diseases. Preventive vaccines are now available so that it will improve the immunity power of one’s body. That could be a good measure to eradicate these diseases.
Health issues are one thing that revolves around humans throughout their life span. Many such cases have been noted in the recent years. Diseases are found to be very common only difference being with the names and types of diseases. It is very rare to find a healthy person after the age of sixty. The reason being several; global warming, the air pollution around us, change in food and diet over the years, etc. Proper health care needs to be maintained to live a safe and disease free life.
What is the difference between Pandemic and Epidemic?
• Epidemic is an outbreak of a contagious disease that spreads rapidly and extensively and affecting many individuals simultaneously in an area or a population. (e.g: cholera).
• Pandemic is an epidemic over a wide geographic area and affecting a large proportion of the population. (e.g: AIDS or Swine flu).