Anxiety over Coronavirus is widely spread all over the country. Every day someone asks me in my office about how they can protect their children from getting it and I promised them that I will write about a blog with the information.
This is a new coronavirus that has not been identified before and it is called COVID- 19, which means CO for Corona, VI for the virus, D for disease, and 19 for the year 2019. These viruses have caused different diseases in the past such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). COVID – 19, the current CORONA virus, originated from Wuhan City in China, and it probably started in live animals and then spread to humans. Currently, it appears that this virus is spreading human-to-human with ease and is highly contagious. It spread through respiratory droplets due to unprotected cough, a sneeze or a spit. There is no evidence that food products have any role. The respiratory spread is a reason the CDC recommends isolation of a person either exposed to someone or has a disease, for an extended period of time. To limit the transmission, washing hands frequently throughout the day, and not touching your face, mouth or nose.
General symptoms vary and they can be mild, such as a common cold or a sore throat, to severe, such as respiratory distress. A majority of the infected have a fever, cough, and respiratory distress. Nausea or vomiting has been reported during the illness.
This illness affects the older population more often than children. Children so far have shown mild symptoms such as fever, nasal congestion, and cough. Respiratory distress is uncommon. Children with debilitating conditions may get severe symptoms. It is not very clear at this stage whether pregnant women are more susceptible, but due to immunological and physiological changes happens in their body during the pregnancy, it makes sense to take extra precautions.
Following preventive actions are generally recommended:
- Clean touched surface frequently such as tables, doorknobs, doors, switches, handles, toilets, faucets, kitchen appliances, etc.
- Wash hands well with soap and water for 20 seconds or more. If water and soap unavailable, then use alcohol-based hand sanitizers that have at least 60% alcohol.
- Disinfect electronics with 70% alcohol containing sprays frequently
- Stay at home if you have symptoms of the disease such as fever, cough or respiratory difficulties
- Clean hands well after coughing, blowing the nose, sneezing, using a restroom, before eating food, touching a pet, or shaking a hand or touching someone else.
- Use a tissue when you sneeze or cough and throw it in a trash
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
So, what I do during this time? Medical training makes me a bit compulsive about hygiene and cleaning, I admit, but the following is still a good idea:
- Try not to shake hands. If you do, do not touch your face, eyes or nose until you wash your hands.
- Use a napkin to open the door, push elevator buttons, a light switch, or a toilet handles.
- If possible, carry a food serving plastic gloves. They are especially handy when you pump gas.
- Use wipes at the stores to clean the cart handles.
- Keep sanitizer or wipes in the car and use them when you enter.
- Wash hands frequently and keep your surroundings clean.
- Buy disposable masks and N-95 mask in case you need them.
- Stock up with hand sanitizer bottles that has at least 70% alcohol. You can make them at home if you do not find them in stores. You will have to buy 99% rubbing alcohol and 100% pure aloe vera gel. Then add 1/3 cup of aloe vera to 2/3 cup of rubbing alcohol. Mix them with a spoon and pour it in a clean bottle with a pump cap. It is really easy to make it.
- Keep up with your supplements intake. Zinc proven to shorten the course of viruses. Improve immunity, eat well, sleep well, and most importantly, don’t stress.
Maybe it will be like Y2K. I still have a kerosene lamp and other stuff that was supposed to help me during the crisis. Maybe this all will be a great story to tell your grandchildren, who knows?