Ever seen someone cough or sneeze who doesn’t cover their mouth? You’ve likely seen a spray of fluids come out of their mouth. Gross, we know. If that person is infected with something like COVID-19, all those little drops can contain infection or viruses; thankfully, this spray only travels a short distance before settling. That is why social distancing and handwashing frequently and thoroughly is so important! Recently published data shows:
Right now, we believe that people are most contagious when they are experiencing symptoms and at their sickest. Some spread may be possible when someone doesn’t have any symptoms. There are some reports of this happening, but this does not seem to be the main way the virus spreads.
Social distancing can reduce and slow the spread of this virus. By keeping 6 feet between people, you reduce your risk of becoming sick yourself. If you avoid getting sick, you can also protect others, like family members who may be at a higher risk than you. Juan Delcan, a visual artist, created the animation, below, to show how social distancing can help slow and stop the spread of COVID-19 and save lives. As you can see, without proper social distance the virus can spread rapidly.
The CDC is currently listing the following people as being at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19:
Be careful and be smart. If you can, wipe down and disinfect your shopping cart. Use hand sanitizer while in the store and be sure to avoid touching your face. When you return home, wash your hands. If you’re very worried or at risk, you may want to disinfect products as you unpack them before putting them away. Everyone should dispose of one time use bags immediately or wipe down reusable bags. Wash your hands immediately after you finish putting away your groceries.
For many people, it might feel like you just started hearing about this virus and disease. Here’s a helpful timeline to understand the when this started and how it spread:
Yes, it is possible a person can get COVID-19 if they touch a surface with the virus on it and then tough their face, mouth, nose, or eyes. New data suggests the virus may be able to live on contaminated surface for up to 3 days. That’s why washing your hands thoroughly and frequently, especially after touching something, is so important. Here is a helpful video that explains how this can happen
Most people who become sick with COVID-19 feel similar symptoms to the flu: fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Most people will recover from these symptoms with rest and proper care at home (drinking lots of fluids, taking over-the-counter medicine as instructed by your doctor, etc.); recovery may take several days, or even a week or two. Be sure to call your doctor if you feel sick and follow their specific instruction. Remember, everybody’s health is different!
Some people are risk of having more severe, or worse, symptoms with this infection. Those people at a higher-risk will need to monitor themselves closely and, if they start to experience any sort of flu-like symptoms, should call their doctor’s office immediately, even if symptoms are mild.
It’s important to follow CDC guidelines, and listen to your doctor and local health department to decide when to stop home isolation. According to the CDC, you have recovered if it has been at least 7 days since your symptoms started, if you have not had a fever for 3 days and haven’t been taking fever-reducing medicine, and if symptoms like cough and shortness of breath have improved. But again, even the CDC says you should listen to your doctor and local health officials as every community is experiencing COVID-19 differently.
Last updated on July 20th, 2022 at 11:22 am