As I write this article, it seems I can’t remember life before Covid 19. Can you recall life before social distancing, hand washing and masks?
I remember a time when I could go and sit at a crowded coffee cafe and leisurely read a magazine. The biggest issue was getting the seat you wanted. Remember? As of this writing, Covid 19 is spreading across the US with more than two-million Covid 19 cases and over 125,000 deaths.
Hospital capacity are approaching 100% from Covid 19 admissions. That’s important because if you have chest pain, stroke symptoms or complications from your chronic medical problems think…DKA, COPD exacerbation or elevated blood pressure, there might be no room at the hospital for you. Think on that for a minute.
- It’s amazing that the virus and its impact on community, businesses and healthcare seems to be worsening. Is there some- thing we could do to mitigate our risk? Yes, in fact there are some areas that can be focused on.
Below are four areas with key points where we can take per- sonal responsibility and do our part to reduce the impact of the virus.
- Smart Hand Washing
Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you’ve been in a public place is very important.
- Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose mouth with unwashed hands.
- Use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, if soap and water is not available.
- Social Distancing
Social distancing is especially important for the elderly and those with chronic medical illnesses. Remember, people without symptoms can spread the virus.
- Distancing is important because people with the virus but without symptoms can spread the virus.
- Avoid mass gatherings as much as possible.
- Whenever possible, maintain at least six feet between you and other people.
- Covid 19 Testing
There are two types of tests available for Covid-19: Viral test tells you if you have a current infection. Antibody test tells you if you’ve had the infection in the past. If you have mild symptoms, you may be able to recover at home without medical care. If you have worsening symptoms, call your healthcare professional for additional guidance. If you test positive or negative, you should continue to take preventive measures to protect yourself and others.
Covid 19 spreads mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets. When a person cough, sneezes, talks or raise their voices (shouting/singing) the virus can be spread. Wearing a face mask protects others, but the mask is not a substitute for social distancing. When others wear masks, their mask protects you. A cloth mask is acceptable; reserve the N 95 masks for healthcare workers.
A few other tips to keep in mind when dealing wth Covid con- cerns:
- Cover your mouth (with your arm) when you sneeze or cough.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched areas like door- knobs, remote controls and car steering wheels.
Sometimes we become weary and frustrated when we feel vulnerable. Covid 19 has challenged us to look at ourselves and to see what is really important. There are things we can control. We are not powerless. Stay calm, take a deep breath and carry on.