The new pandemic “COVID-19” has been trending since early 2020 because of its high rate of transmission.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus in a food market in Wuhan China, in December 2019, a lot of countries, including the USA, have recorded a rising death toll of over 17,000.
So as you stay indoors during this lockdown, you might be wondering what the new coronavirus is all about, how it spreads, its symptoms and how to protect yourself.
This article will show you important information about this infection that you may not know about.
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 stands for “Coronavirus disease 2019,” and it is a respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus “SARS-CoV-2.” This virus is first reported in China and it belongs to the same family with other viruses, including Severe Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).
How does the COVID-19 spread?
This illness can spread from person to person, especially among people who are in close contact (within about 6 feet). When an infected person sneezes or coughs, you can also get infected if the respiratory droplets touch you.
Some good examples of people at risk of infection include:
- People in group residential settings
- Healthcare workers
- People in detention or correctional facilities
- People who have recently been in an area with an ongoing spread of COVID-19
More so, when you touch a surface or object that has the virus on it and then use your mouth, nose, or maybe eyes, you can also get infected.
However, people at higher risk of serious illness if they get the virus include:
- People 70 years and older
- Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people 50 years and older with a chronic medical condition.
- People with a weak immune system
- People 65 years and older with chronic medical conditions
What symptoms are associated with COVID-19?
This virus may not cause any symptoms at the initial stage for some people. In fact, you may carry it for up to two weeks without noticing any symptoms. That’s why doctors are learning new ways to identify people who are infected with this virus.
However, many patients suffering from COVID-19 usually have respiratory illness with the following symptoms:
- Shortness of breath
- Fever that gradually increases in temperature.
These symptoms can become severe in some people. You should call emergency medical services if you notice any of the following:
- Persistent pressure in the chest
- Difficulty breathing
- Excessive drowsiness
- Blue face or lips
More investigation is still on to know more symptoms of the illness.
What treatments are available for COVID-19?
The truth is that there is currently no cure for COVID-19. But several treatment options and vaccines are being developed. So for now, the treatments available are just to manage the symptoms.
That’s why you need to seek medical attention immediately you notice you have COVID-19.
How can you protect yourself from coronaviruses?
There are several measures you need to take to prevent COVID-19. But the most important is to practice social distancing and avoid contact with people who are showing symptoms of the infection.
Other prevention tips include:
- Wash your hands frequently using water and soap for at least 20 seconds.
- Use sanitizers having at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your nose, mouth, eyes with unwashed hands and follow healthy measures.
- Don’t go out if you have any cold or flu symptoms.
- Cover your mouth with tissues or the inside of your elbow whenever you want to cough or sneeze.
- Use disinfectants to clean any object you touch frequently, including your computer, mobile phone, dishware, utensils, and doorknobs.
While at home, you can also prevent weight gain.
COVID-19 has affected hundreds of thousands of people and it does not have any available treatment for now. You can stay safe if you follow the prevention tips listed above. However, if you notice any symptoms of infection, do not hesitate to seek medical help immediately. Stay Safe!