What Are Viruses And Why Are They So Hard To Eradicate?
It's not unusual for people to group together viruses and bacteria into generic terms like germs or bugs, but there are actually some fundamental differences that make viruses unique and difficult to get rid of.
Simply put, viruses are a package of DNA wrapped up in a protective layer of protein. This means that unlike bacteria, which are single-cell organisms, viruses are not actually living entities in their own right. They rely on host cells, often human cells, to replicate and reproduce.
Once inside the body, viruses can reproduce rapidly and will usually affect the whole body rather than just an infected area like bacteria. As they multiply, mutations occur and new strains or viruses begin to evolve; this is their secret weapon to survival.
Antibiotics are not effective against viruses in the same way they are against bacteria. Instead, we rely on our incredibly complex and efficient immune systems to detect and destroy viruses. This is why it is important to kill viruses outside of the body, where they are unable to reproduce.
One thing viruses and bacteria do have in common is their susceptibility to soaps, alcohol and strong UV light. Soap and alcohol break down the proteins that form the protective coating of viruses and the cell walls of bacteria.