"You can"t kill them, because they are not technically alive! They consist solely of replicable genetic molecules and a protective shield made of protein and sometimes fats. Unlike living organisms, they do not utilize energy, they aren"t mobile on their own, and they are incapable of reproducing themselves.
You read that right! In spite of being the namesake of our multiplication phrase "going viral", viruses can"t multiply unless they hijack the cell machinery of a living host. Thus, they are zombie pirates, invading, taking over the faculties of a living cell, and killing for the sake of their own replication. You see, it takes very special cellular equipment to reproduce genetic material every time you make a new layer of skin, for example, your amazing cells do it seamlessly using a well-coordinated and complex array of enzymes and internal factories. But viruses are impoverished in this arena. So they cut a hole through a cell membrane, dump their manufacturing instructions into the cell and, like a pirate takes over a ship, the viral blueprint commandeers the cell machinery into making gazillions of more viruses. The swollen cell then ruptures, spewing viruses, so that even more cells - and more victims - are infected. The fever and mucus that accompany an infection is the body"s way of trying to destroy the pirates, but as we"ve already noted, it"s hard to "kill" something that was never alive. Dying cells emit protein signals, like a ship uses flag (or radio) signals, to surrounding healthy cells telling them to shut down operations in order to save themselves. They also call for the Immune System's rescue fleet. Once deployed, the rescue fleet will increase blood flow, up the heat, send in specialized protein chevaliers and eventually send out the Killer Cell "big guns". Sadly, all this necessary rescue operation creates really miserable symptoms.
In spite the hope of existing anti-viral drugs becoming effective in the fight against COVID-19, the CDC website still warns that "non-pharmaceutical measures are the best defense". Unfortunately, the link to the expected list of their recommendations of such non-pharmaceutical measures brings up only handwashing and social distancing. These undoubtedly ARE the most important measures they can cite on a social/community level, but alternative and complementary medicine also chimes in with ways to strengthen our personal arsenals against these zombie invaders. The most important defense is a strong immune system, something we kind of have to think about and plan for these days."
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