This deadly virus was first reported in Wuhan in December of last year, hence the name “COVID-19.” Since then, the disease has spread to different parts of the world and was declared a pandemic in March of this year. The WHO and the CDC have come up with recommendations on how people can protect themselves from this disease. In the past couple of months, many businesses selling COVID-19 related products have come up. These products are very helpful in curbing the spread of the virus.
Corona-virus is spread from one person to another if they’re close. If an infected person sneezes, coughs, or even speaks, respiratory droplets are released into the air.
It has also been established that you don’t necessarily need to be in close contact with an infected person to catch the virus. Touching pathogen-infected surfaces is another way that the virus is spread.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms vary from one person to another and can range from mild to severe. While most people remain asymptomatic or show mild symptoms, very few people get very sick and sometimes die from it. The common symptoms that most people show are fever, coughing, and fatigue. Other symptoms include difficulty in breathing, chest pain, headache, chills, muscle ache, sore throat, and loss of taste/smell.
Generally, the symptoms are similar to those of other respiratory illnesses and take anywhere from two days to two weeks after infection.
How to protect yourself
As you can see, this disease is quite contagious, but we have some good news – the disease is preventable. There are certain precautions you can take to protect yourself like it is with any other virus. These include:
- Keeping your environment clean
Practicing good hygiene is the best way to protect yourself from the corona-virus. To do this, you need to:
- Regularly wash your hands with soap and running water for a minimum of 20 seconds, especially after coughing, sneezing, and blowing your nose.
- Sanitize your hands regularly using an alcohol-based sanitizer that is at least 70% alcohol
- Disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects like doors
- Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, and nose.
- Cough into your elbow rather than into your hands
- Wearing a face mask
It’s highly recommended that you always wear a face mask when going out in public places. This is very important, especially if there are reported cases in the area.
The public should wear medical cloth masks while surgical masks and N-95 respirators are recommended for health care providers.
- Avoiding close contact with people
Avoid crowded places or poorly ventilated rooms. Always keep a distance of about 2 meters. This is a safe distance, and respiratory droplets can hardly get to you.
- Restricting your travel
Always check for travel advisories before making any travel plans.
If you have any underlying health conditions that make you susceptible to complications, only go out when necessary, like when you’re going to the pharmacy or getting groceries.
Note: Stay at home, especially if you’re sick. If you are asymptomatic, you should remain indoors until you test negative. If you’re self-isolating from other people in your home, stay as far apart as you can and if there is no extra bathroom, make sure that it’s cleaned every time you use it.