How to Stay Safe From COVID-19

COVID-19 is everywhere and it’s quickly spreading around many communities but you can take many steps to stay safe and healthy. COVID-19 can be easily transmitted from one person to another, making it dangerous for the public. Being aware of how this virus is transmitted and how to properly handle this virus is the key to fighting this virus off.

COVID-19 is a dangerous virus since some people might not develop any symptoms, and they could be spreading it to others without them being aware. Therefore, it is important to follow social distancing as much as possible. Symptoms may appear two to fourteen days after exposure. At first, the symptoms may not appear to be a threat, but that may depend on how your body reacts to the virus and how strong or weak your immune system is.

According to the CDC, mild symptoms of this virus may include dry coughing and tiredness and could be treated at home with proper isolation. Severe and emergent symptoms of this virus are difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, having a fever, and bluish lips or face. In the case you develop any emergency symptoms, it’s best that you seek medical attention immediately. COVID-19 could also affect many people differently, certain people are more vulnerable than others such as older adults (65 years or older), people with medical conditions such as asthma, chronic lung disease, or anyone with a compromised immune system. If you have any underlying medical conditions it’s best for you to stay home during this pandemic and avoid social contact.

The key to fighting this virus is to practice good hygiene and staying away from the public. According to the CDC, washing your hands often with soap and water removes the virus from your skin. You should wash your hands for at least 20 seconds thoroughly including in between your fingers, palms, and under your nails. This is especially the case after you’ve been in a public place, after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. Another great way to stay safe is to avoid close contact with people, and to follow the “6 feet rule.” Barbara Naclerio, Public Health Educator at East Shore District Health Department, said, “Avoid any public places, including the grocery store. Make sure you try to do one trip a week or one trip every two weeks to any public place where you know you might be in close range of people.” Since the virus can stay on many surfaces for a short period of time it's important that you clean and disinfect frequently-touched surfaces daily with a solution that contains at least 70% alcohol. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is also very beneficial during this outbreak. Rosie Delgado, a nurse at Gaylord hospital, said, “Make sure you're staying healthy by hydrating, drinking hot fluids, eating healthy, and getting enough sleep.” Rosie recommends for everyone to stay healthy during this pandemic since it will help boost your immune system, so your body has a better chance at fighting off any virus that enters your body.

Photo Credit: Live Healthy: DHEC’s Health & Environment Blog

Going out in public should be one of your last resorts, but there are many ways to lessen the risk of getting the coronavirus. According to the CDC, when you're out in public it’s important that you wear a face mask, gloves and to wash your faces as much as possible or always carry hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol. Also, avoid any larger gatherings that are in public and make sure that you cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow and wash your hands immediately. Since this virus can be transmitted through your nose, eyes, and mouth, it’s important that you don’t touch your face, especially after touching something that's of public use. After doing groceries, make sure that you sanitize all your items with gloves and wash your hands afterward.

Photo Credit: Tech. Sgt. Robert Sizelove

According to Ms. Naclerio, if you have severe, emergent symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, you’ll need to call 911 and let them know that you have severe symptoms of the virus so the medics that come to your house come dressed appropriately in personal protective equipment so that they don’t get sick. If you have tested positive and your symptoms aren’t severe, you should stay home avoiding contact with others including your family.

As of now there are 278 cases of COVID-19 in East Haven and many residents are trying their best to stay healthy and safe such as former EHHS student, Daniel Baronski. Dan and his family have taken many steps to avoid getting this virus, they’ve been avoiding the public as much as they can, they've been following the safety guidelines during this pandemic and they’ve been practicing good hygiene. Dan also tries avoiding any large crowds whenever he’s in a public area to reduce his chances of getting the virus.

By following the safety guidelines and practicing good hygiene, you are keeping yourself and others safe away from this deadly virus. We should all take responsibility for self-quarantine to prevent this virus from further spreading and we’ll quickly go back to normality.