How to take better care of yourself from coronavirusSohani Shathechana Mihindukulasooriya Fernando
- What is Coronavirus?
- Coronavirus Symptoms
- How to protect yourself from coronavirus?
- How can you prevent it?
- How to protect yourself while travelling?
- How to protect your self from the flu?
- Immune boosting food
Coronavirus is a viral genome found in the bodies of animals and rarely being transmitted to humans, recently the whole world is suffering from an outbreak of this particular virus and is recently given the name Covid 19 as the outbreak was started in late 2019. Covid 19 is a virus that belongs to the family corona, where some deadly viruses like MERS (middle east respiratory syndrome and SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) belongs. Covid 19 is first found in a seafood market at Wuhan which is the capital city of Hubei province in southern China. This has evolved first in animals in the particular market and then being subjected to a genetic variation perhaps alteration in the viral genetic code (changes in the ribonucleic when pairing of A-U, G-C,) this altered and more powerful virus than could be transmitted from animals to humans but not through the air (expelled air of animals after expiration) but through the consumption of meat of the animals who had the particular virus in their bloodstreams. By subjecting to further change the virus quickly got the ability means it’s further alternated and now being transmitted from human to human through droplets of the carrier person dragging the whole world into a pandemic situation as announced by the chairman of the world health organization Dr Assad Hafeez.
Thousands of people die all over the world every 24 hours due to coronavirus. According to the demographic characteristics and further studies, experts have concluded once a person gets exposure to the virus within 12 to 14 hours that person becomes a carrier for the disease that means he can spread the virus to other people. As the incubation period of the virus is 14 to 24 days (varied for mild cases) the virus stays quiet in your body without showing any symptoms but once the incubation period is done the person tempted to show the symptoms of the virus, such as dry cough, fever, headache, Mild diarrhoea, sore throat most people infected with the virus will experience a mild to serious respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatments furthermore older people and people’s with cancer, diabetes, other pulmonary disfunction, and cardiovascular diseases are at a risk and more likely to develop serious illness.
How to protect yourself from coronavirus
The origin of this deadly virus is being spread throughout the whole world, according to the WHO many countries around the world have been reporting deaths since the outbreak. As this is a new virus that is subjecting to rapid changes. It is really difficult for the virologists to understand the multiplication and spread of this virus hence the absence of the vaccine. As you can see, the below map shows the countries hit by Covid 19 for the past few days.
Originated from southern China in the Asian continent, it has vastly spread throughout all continents recording the biggest hit in Europe, Italy. If we are not vigilant and do not take further actions this virus can make the whole world a cemetery.
How can you prevent it?
This sounds simple and a frequent action in our usual life however currently it holds more importance. Everybody should wash your hands for a minimum of 20 to 30 seconds using Anti-Bacterial soap. You should rub both hands against each other and also in between the fingers very thoroughly. When outside, it is best to carry a hand sanitizer (made with ethyl alcohol or ethanol- C2H5OH) to clean your hands and keep your hands off your face before and after sanitizing for better preventive measures. During times of bad health, always use a tissue that should be disposed right after or sneeze into your elbow.
There are two types of masks,
1) Surgical masks
A surgical mask is a disposable medical device that you can buy from the pharmacy and protect yourself against infectious agents transmitted through “droplets” (saliva, secretions from the upper respiratory tract). These masks should be worn only for 3 to 8 hours and then should be disposed appropriately. If a person wears this, it protects the person and his environment (air surface, equipment, etc) from airborne infectious agents. But it will not prevent the person from being contaminated by a virus like Covid 19.
Bacterial filtration efficiency,
European standard – BFE1, BFE2, Type R
these are protective devices that protect you against infectious agents that are transmitted through “aerosols”. These masks contain a filter to filter the air that you breathe and also an exhalation value for user comfort. These masks are reusable and also disposable
Bacterial filtration efficiency,
European standards- FFP1, FFP2, FFP3
How to protect yourself while travelling?
To overcome the outbreak most countries and cities are on lockdown or under police-curfew to encourage social distancing. As large gatherings of people can make the spread of Covid 19 vigorous and uncontrollable. Therefore, the best thing people can do is to stay at home. In some countries, police protection and fines are applied for people who disobey the quarantine law without a valid reason as they have blocked all the public transports between region borders which means people can’t cross the boundaries but what if you want to travel during this coronavirus outbreak? is it safe? Will there be any legal issues?
We highly recommend avoiding travelling for the betterment of yourself, family and society. If you decide to travel, make sure to be very attentive to your surroundings and protect yourself with optimum security. (masks, gloves, sanitizer) Always remember to obey the security measures implied by the local health and low authorities, keep your travelling short as possible and be quick on your feet and once returned make sure to wash hands properly, remove the masks and dispose of them. Make sure to also clean your shoes, wipe jackets or anything that made contact outside with alcohol-based cleaners to ensure germs do not enter the house. Any goods brought from outside should be removed from the wrappers or the contained bags and disposed of immediately.
How to protect yourself from coronavirus when travelling on a plane.
When you’re travelling you’re exposed to a host of germs than you would in the normal life. Therefore, we highly recommend you to avoid travelling unless its an emergency or holds great importance to you. If you do decide to fly during the pandemic, here are some useful tips to be mindful of;
Before boarding the flight make sure that you’re dressed properly covering your whole body, make sure to purchase the recommended mask, a sanitizer and anti-bacterial wipes.
Have your nails short and straight and clean as often as you can avoiding trendy nails that accumulate germs while you wash your hands and remember to avoid touching your hands.
Once you board the flight, make sure to wipe every surface with a sanitizer or any recommended alcohol-based cleaner and wipe every surface that you might contact with. (seat, hand rest, tv screen, belt,). Repeat at least twice during the flight.
Its recommended that you avoid consuming snacks in a short flight and make sure to share any food or snacks with others as it has a higher capability of spreading the germs from one person to another.
Do not rush during getting in and getting on of the plane, try to maintain a minimum distance with another person as much as possible.
If you feel ill, make sure to adhere to the above-mentioned rules and always let the healthcare officer or the attendant of the flight know so they could accommodate you in a better way.
If your taking a long haul flight make sure to clean yourselves with anti-bacterial tissues and sanitize your hands, to keep your body hydrated keep drinking lukewarm water every 20 Minutes. This prevents any accumulated viral agents in your throat to go the oesophagus instead of going to the trachea later entering the lungs and causing respiratory illnesses.
How to protect your self from the flu
Flu is a general health condition caused by influenza virus type A and type B that infect mainly the nose and throat. Every year 140,000 to 710,000 people are being hospitalized and 12000 to 56000 deaths are reported due to flu around the world. A general influenza virus symptoms are shown in a human 2 days after exposure to the virus, these symptoms include; fever, runny nose, soar treat, headache, cold, indigestion and vomiting these symptoms can be different according to the age of a person and the virulence of the contaminated virus.
Each year lots of people get affected by viral flu this is more common during the winter in the hemispheres and throughout the year in the equator areas.
Virologist and other Health experts are facing great trouble to differentiate between general flu and coronavirus with the given symptoms. Let us see what are the precautions we can take to prevent flu.
1) Flu shots
This is a vaccine that is being injected into the hands of a person. This vaccine triggers to make antibodies in one’s body usually 2 weeks after being vaccinated then, the antibodies protect any viral genome that enters our body.
Who should not get the vaccine?
Children under 6 months
People that have several allergies to certain chemicals in drugs.
To whom is the vaccine essential?
Children between age 6 months to 4years
Adults above 50
Patients with chronic pulmonary diseases
People who work in chronic care facilities and health care professionals.
Individuals with a BMI 4
2) Practice good hygienic habits
Flu is highly contagious and can spread through aerosol, droplets or by touching a surface where the virus being split and then touching the nose, eyes or mouth. Therefore, personal cleanliness is very important to avoid flu. Washing your hands properly with soap and water for 20 seconds will help to remove the transmissible flora of germs on your hands. Use a hand sanitizer, cut your nails properly and clean keep them clean. Try not to keep close contacts with the ill people and disinfect your surrounding.
3) Using antiviral drugs
These are prescribed medications by doctors which reduce the severe compliance of flu, these drugs when entering the body fight against the flu and prevent the virus from being multiplied in one’s body. examples of
Some antiviral drugs, as recommended by the CDC are *Tamiflu, *Relenza and* rapid. After taking antiviral drugs a reduction of the symptoms is experienced.
4) Maintain your immune system
A good immune system always keeps you away from the attacks of viruses, naturally, WBC (White Blood Cells) in our bloodstream provide us protection but we can promote our immunity by the food we consume. Flavonoids in blueberries, black tea and red wine help to increase the response of the gut microbes to protect against flu infections.
5) Avoid smoking
Smoking makes your lungs weak, ill and weaken immune system therefore if a smoker is infected by an influenza virus, the chances of leading him to sever respiratory problems are high therefore avoid smoking or staying near people who do smoke.
Apart from the above tips, avoiding some cold food items, drinking mild cold water, wearing your clothes properly during cold days, covering your nose and mouth when working with dust and other tiny particles (silica sand, fibre dust) are some general practices which will lead you to say away or to protect yourself from flu.