In December 2019, the new coronavirus outbreak began in Wuhan, China. Since then, COVID-19 has quickly spread and is now deemed as a pandemic. As of mid-May, there are over 4 million confirmed cases worldwide. The virus seems to be spreading in communities found in certain affected geographic areas, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As with any virus, though, there are preventative measures you can take to shield yourself from being infected.
Learn how to identify the signs
The symptoms of being infected by the new coronavirus are fever, muscle pain, cough, chills, or shortness of breath. These are somewhat similar to other respiratory virus infections like influenza. While most will only experience mild symptoms, some can become very ill.
You should also know that the virus is transmitted through respiratory droplets, which are passed on when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or by direct physical contact. If you think you’ve been exposed to someone with COVID-19 and feel its symptoms, call ahead before going straight to a hospital or a doctor’s office. Inform them about your symptoms and recent trips.
Wear a cloth face mask
The CDC guidelines now recommend that people wear cloth face masks in public—especially where social distancing is hard to maintain such as grocery stores. After all, it has been proven that someone with COVID-19 could be asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic
Wearing masks will help in mitigating the spread, but it’s still necessary for social distancing to be observed. Furthermore, surgical masks as well as N-95 respirators should only be reserved for healthcare workers and medical frontliners.
Rinse and Repeat!
In order to better protect yourself from COVID-19, practice good hygiene. Your unwashed hands shouldn’t touch your eyes, nose, and mouth. It’s also best to regularly wash your hands with soap and water. If those aren’t available, use 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
Go out in public when you are sick is another no, no. About to cough or sneeze? Do it on a tissue paper, then throw that in the trash. If you don’t have some, hack into your elbow, rather than your hands. Lastly, don’t forget to clean and sanitize objects that you frequently touch, like your phone.
Avoid close contact
We shall now discuss social distancing. It is a must to maintain a distance of around 6 feet from other people in public spaces since respiratory droplets don’t travel that far. To “flatten the curve” means to inhibit the spread of COVID-19 cases for a longer period so that the health care system won’t be overwhelmed.
You can exercise outside, but make sure to observe social distancing. Since these activities can help with your physical and mental health, it is something that you mustn’t overlook as well during this pandemic.