74% of surveyed Americans say their lives have returned to normal as the US approaches its second holiday season of the COVID-19 pandemic: Poll

·3 min read
Family gathered around smart phone taking Christmas picture
The general optimism comes despite a surge in new infections in the US ahead of the holiday season.Marko Geber/Getty Images
  • 74% of Americans now feel their lives are at least somewhat normal again, a Yahoo News poll found.

  • It surveyed nearly 1,700 Americans, 21% of whom said their lives are now "very normal."

  • Most attributed this return to normal to vaccines.

Almost three-quarters of surveyed Americans say their lives have returned to some semblance of normalcy amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to an online poll by Yahoo News and data analytics firm YouGov.

Of the 1,696 adults surveyed from November 17 to 19, 21% said their lives are "very normal," while 53% described theirs as "somewhat normal" when asked to consider the "impact of COVID-19."

Meanwhile, 19% characterized their lives as "not very normal," and 7% said their lives were "not very normal at all."

Out of all the respondents, 15% also said things "never stopped being normal" for them despite the pandemic.

The optimism comes despite a swell in COVID-19 cases in the US ahead of the holiday season, with the weekly average for new infections surging from 64,023 in late October to 93,668 on Monday.

Unvaccinated Americans in the poll appeared less concerned with the threat of the coronavirus or its impact on their lives than vaccinated people, though they now constitute the majority of those who died or were hospitalized because of the virus.

Almost two-thirds of them said that COVID-19 poses either a "small threat" or "no threat" to them personally.

They were also more likely to say their lives were normal. Seventy percent of unvaccinated Americans polled said their lives are normal, with 25% describing their lives as "very normal" and 27% saying things "never stopped" being normal. In comparison, fewer unvaccinated Americans responded the same, at 19% and 8% respectively.

Additionally, when the poll asked Americans why they felt things had returned to normal, 57% mentioned vaccines.

These respondents cited reasons such as being vaccinated personally, their children being vaccinated, seniors in their live being vaccinated, or receiving a booster shot.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly three-quarters of Americans above the age of five have had their first COVID-19 shot, while 62.8% have been fully vaccinated.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country's top infectious disease expert, said Monday that families could enjoy Thanksgiving and Christmas together without masks as long as everyone is fully vaccinated. But he also advised that people should wear masks when traveling and at indoor gatherings if they don't know the vaccination status of those around them.

Despite a majority of those polled reporting that they felt things were "normal" again, 44% of Americans in the poll said they felt the pandemic is bound to get worse in the fall and winter, while 39% believed it would stay the same. Only 16% said they believed the COVID-19 situation would improve by then.

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