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Will social distancing weaken my immune system?

Experts say anyone looking to boost their immune health during the pandemic should practice habits such as stress management, healthy eating and regular exercise.

Will social distancing weaken my immune system?

In short, no.

Some worry a lack of contact with others will weaken their immune system by reducing its active contact with germs.

But even when we're staying 6 feet from others or spending most of our time at home, our bodies are continuously responding to plenty of bacteria and other germs that inhabit indoor and outdoor environments.

“We’re constantly exposed to microbes,” said Akiko Iwasaki, an immune system researcher at Yale University. "Our immune system is always being triggered.”

The effects of childhood vaccines and other built-up immunity are also long-lasting, Iwasaki said, and won't disappear overnight because we're keeping our distance from others during the pandemic.

Experts say anyone looking to boost their immune health during the pandemic should practice habits such as stress management, healthy eating, regular exercise and getting enough sleep.

"These are the things that actually affect the immune system," Iwasaki said.

A seasonal flu shot will also help protect you from one more potential illness.

RELATED: Pfizer: COVID-19 shot 95% effective, seeking vaccine approval soon

RELATED: US death toll from COVID-19 passes 250,000

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

The United States has more than 11.5 million confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

As of Thursday, the U.S. had more than 250,000 deaths from the virus. Worldwide, there are more than 56 million confirmed cases with more than 1.3 million deaths.