Why our brains struggle to make sense of COVID-19 risks

Dr. Gaurav Suri, a neuroscientist at San Francisco State University, explains how habits can help make the risks of the virus less abstract.

NPR ,

Coronavirus emergency treatment (stock)
Coronavirus emergency treatment (stock)
iStock

Dr. Deborah Birx of the White House Coronavirus Task Force says if you're one of them, assume you're infected, get tested and do not go near your friends or family members without a mask on.

Because COVID-19 is a largely invisible threat, our brains struggle to comprehend it as dangerous. Dr. Gaurav Suri, a neuroscientist at San Francisco State University, explains how habits can help make the risks of the virus less abstract.

Emergency room doctor Leane Wen discusses why it's tempting to make unsafe tradeoffs in day-to-day activities and how to better "budget" our risks.



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