Updated: Mar 25, 2020
Worldwide, we are in very trying times and I would like to urge you all to take the proper precautions to keep yourself, family, and friends safe during this pandemic. Recently, on the news we saw that in the United States, several reports were shown of toilet paper getting sold out. It is common to see that in times of crisis, peoples fight or flight responses kick in and they start behaving erratically. Yes, we should go take certain steps to make sure that we stay safe and do not run out of supplies, but at the same time we should not take somewhat irrational actions that could just cause more catastrophe. In this post, I would like to give you some updates on the state of the coronavirus and also some proven steps on how to stay safe during this pandemic.
NUMBERS DISPLAYING RATES OF INFECTION, OUTCOMES & CONDITIONS
These numbers are suggesting that a majority of people do recover after getting the virus, but the death rate is quite alarming so far. 11 percent is a very high mortality rate and we should be worried mostly because we do not yet have a known cure for the disease. Some people compare the coronavirus to the flu, saying that a lot more people died in the United States of the flu than have died from the virus so far. None of the people that say this take into account that the coronavirus has not been around for a year yet and is already tallying up deaths into the thousands globally, and into the hundreds in the US after being present for only a few weeks. Taking into account that viruses normally spread exponentially, it means that the more people get infected, the more we will be assured that others will get infected. We must also take into account that a lot of people get flu vaccinations, which means that we have a bigger shield against the flu than the coronavirus. Knowing the seriousness of this pandemic, below I will list steps that you can personally take to prevent the spread of the virus.
1. Wash your hands with warm water and soap after using the bathroom or going into crowded spaces
I know that it sounds like this goes without saying, but you would be surprised the number of people who do not actually wash their hands after using the bathroom. An article from Live Science showed that just about 5% of people actually wash their hands correctly after using the bathroom. Gross! Right? If you're going to do something, you might as well do it right. During times of a pandemic, we want to reduce this number by a lot if we want to reduce the number of the virus spreading by contact with carriers of the virus.
2. Stay home and self quarantine as much as possible
I know this also sounds like common sense, but a lot of people can't help but socialize even in times of crisis. It may actually be a natural human reaction to want to be surrounded by more family and friends when they start to feel fear. In a case like this, moving around and meeting others is not a good thing. The federal government earlier this week recommended not having meeting of groups more than 50, then later changed this to no more than 10. The reason for this is reducing the chance that people meet in one space, spread the infection, and then have those people go home or to other places to further spread the virus. Even though it is said that most people recover from this virus, and especially young people, we should not endanger others who may be more at risk. Even if you might not die from the virus, you could be used as a vehicle for the virus to get into someone with a vulnerable immune system.
3. Increase ventilation in homes and regularly disinfect surfaces
This advice is given to especially those who are still having to go to their places of work. If you work as a cashier, or have a job where you regularly interact with customers then heed this advice. On your way to work in a car, keep the windows down and let the air circulate. Also, in your shop, try to keep windows open to promote cross ventilation. Regularly use disinfectant to clean both your hands and surfaces that customers may have touched.
These guidelines I gave sound like common sense, but I just wanted to reiterate it for those who may have not already been practicing the aforementioned behaviors. We can battle this disease together and help to curb the damage it will inevitably have caused to many lives already. For more information on how to stay safe during these trying times, please check the Center for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) website.
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