Essay Smallpox As A Communicable Disease

1546 Words Oct 3rd, 2016 7 Pages
Smallpox is a highly communicable disease that is spread by breath, contact, and clothing. It has been dated back to ancient times with descriptions as early as 10th century texts. Up until around the 18th century, contracting smallpox was considered “normal”. Every kid got smallpox and it was seen as just a part of growing up. Before the germ theory people thought that getting ill from a disease was God’s will. Since before 1880 there was not sufficient technology to detect microbes, the only explanation people could come up with for why people got sick was because it was part of “God’s plan”. Later on these theories were disproved thanks to modern technology, but during the time between then and now, medical advances only took one step at a time to get where they are today. Inoculation is what started the path to vaccinations. Since smallpox was such a common disease, communities tried to prevent it the best they could. These folk practices were used in many parts of the world like Turkey, Asia, China, and India. The two most common practices included inserting pus into an incision made on the arm and breathing in crushed smallpox scabs into the nose. Both of these methods were used on healthy children since once you acquire the smallpox disease you are automatically immune to it. Inoculation differs from vaccination based on the virus placed inside the body. A vaccination is performed with a weakened stand of a virus. The immune system is then triggered to protect the…

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