In December last year, a brand new virus was reported in China. In the past three months, this once isolated virus has become a global pandemic, causing fear and illness worldwide. COVID-19 is a respiratory illness, which is part of a large family of viruses known as coronaviruses.
COVID-19 is primarily spread through person-to-person contact and respiratory droplets, such as when as infected person sneezes or coughs. In these trying times, the most important thing you can do is learn the symptoms of COVID-19, and how to protect yourself.
COVID-19 symptoms can range from very mild symptoms to pneumonia. Unfortunately, elderly people and those with pre-existing conditions, such as a compromised immune system or diabetes, are at a greater risk of developing a serious illness.
People with the illness often experience:
Shortness of breath, which may develop into pneumonia
Protective Measures Against COVID-19
Frequently Wash and Sanitise Your Hands
Ensure you thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitiser, or preferably, wash them with soap and warm water for at least twenty seconds, particularly if you have recently been in a public place, or are coughing or sneezing. By washing or sanitising your hands, you’re effectively killing any virus that may be on your hands.
If you are unable to wash or sanitise your hands, avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose, and mouth. This is as your hands may have come in contact with the virus. For instance, you may have recently touched a doorknob that an infected person had also touched, and may have spread the virus to. By touching your face with contaminated hands, the virus can enter your body and make you ill.
In your own home, aim to clean and disinfect surfaces daily, especially if they’re touched often. This includes things like doorknobs, light switches, handles, tables, keyboards, and sinks.
Follow Good Respiratory Hygiene
Respiratory droplets, like those from sneezes or coughs, spread COVID-19. Good respiratory hygiene means you cover your mouth and nose with the inside of your elbow or a tissue when you cough or sneeze. After doing so, immediately dispose of the tissue, and if possible, wash your hands.
Maintain Social Distancing and Avoid Contact with Sick People
Try and maintain a distance of at least one metre between yourself and others. If anyone is coughing or sneezing, aim for more than one metre. Additionally, avoid close contact with people who are sick, both in public and at home.
Stay Home If You Are Feeling Unwell
If you are sick, it is extremely important that you stay home to prevent spreading illness to others, even if you don’t have COVID-19. Ask a family member or friend to run important errands for you, like grocery shopping, and to leave the groceries at the front door.
If you begin showing symptoms of COVID-19, particularly a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, seek medical attention as soon as possible. Ensure you call the medical practice in advance, as your health care provider will be able to quickly direct you to the right health facility, as well as protect you and help prevent the spread of illness.
At APERS, we understand that keeping your loved ones safe is the most important thing in the world.
For more information about our personal medical alarms, please call 1300 852 148 or send us a message via our website.