When a pandemic sweeps across the world, many people are stuck and don’t know what to do. A lot of terms get thrown around that are supposed to serve as a guide, but their meanings can be vague. To stop the spread of the virus, two ideas have been suggested and implemented: social isolation and quarantine. These both have their own meanings and purposes, so let’s look at which is appropriate for what situation.
1. Social Isolation
Social isolation is essentially what it sounds like. It means avoiding large crowds, having as little contact with others as possible, and generally keeping to yourself. This is a method to keep yourself safe from those who might be infected. This doesn’t mean you have to lock yourself in your house and tell everyone to stay away. But the less contact you have with others and the general public, the better.
Quarantine is a more serious isolation method. Generally, those who are suspected to be ill are quarantined, meaning they’re kept away from the public so they don’t spread the virus if they do have it. People in quarantine aren’t showing symptoms, but that doesn’t mean they’re not contagious. A quarantine is generally ordered by the government, whereas social isolation is something you can choose to do.
3. How they work together.
In order to stop a virus from spreading, both social isolation and quarantine are used in tandem. The less contact people have, the fewer chances the virus has to spread. During a pandemic, anything that can be done to slow the spread is important, so depending on your situation, consider what you can do to keep yourself, and others, safe.