Wherever we are in the world right now, we are alarmed by the increasing number of people who are infected by COVID-19. Basically, COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus introduced to humans for the first time. It mainly spreads from person to person through the droplets produced when an infected person talks, coughs, or sneezes. While most people can only experience mild illness and recover, the disease could be more severe for those who are immune-compromised and have an underlying medical condition. The disease, as you already know, can also be life-threatening. So now, how do we protect ourselves from being infected with COVID-19? Here are some guidelines sourced from the World Health Organization (WHO).
Wash Your Hands Frequently
Regular washing of hands using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer can kill viruses that may be on your hands. Everyone is advised to wash their hands after coughing or sneezing, when caring for the sick, when hands are visibly dirty, as well as before, during, and after you prepare food, before eating, after toilet use, and after handling animals or animal waste.
Maintain Social Distancing
Considering that the virus can be spread through droplets when someone infected coughs or sneezes, you must maintain a safe distance of 3 feet or 1 meter between yourself and anyone you are interacting with, who may or may not have the disease. If the person has COVID-19 and you're too close, you can breathe in the droplets and become infected, too.
Avoid Touching Your Eyes, Nose, and Mouth
All are advised to refrain from touching their eyes, nose, and mouth as their hands touch many surfaces that may be contaminated by the virus. If your hands happen to touch a contaminated surface, the virus can transfer to your eyes, nose, and mouth and from there, it can enter your body and make you ill.
Practice Respiratory Hygiene
Practicing good respiratory hygiene involves coughing and sneezing the right way. If you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a bent elbow or use a tissue. Immediately dispose the used tissue. By following this guideline, you can protect the people around you, not only from COVID-19, but also from other viruses such as a regular cold or flu.
If You Have Fever, Cough and Difficulty Breathing, Seek Medical Care Early
If you have a fever, cough, or have trouble breathing, you should immediately seek medical attention from your health care provider and they will lead you to the right health facility. If you don't have the symptoms mentioned but are feeling unwell, you should still stay at home as the virus easily infects those who have a weakened immune system.
Our national and local authorities are doing their best to prevent the further spread of the virus while keeping us all updated with the latest information about COVID-19. We can help them and all the frontliners by following all the rules and regulations that have been imposed. Now is not the time to point fingers, but a time to unite and win against COVID-19!