The whole world is grappled with the serious challenge of the pandemic disease known as Coronavirus or COVID-19. It is a highly infectious disease that can target anyone irrespective of age, gender and region. This virus had first originated from the city of Wuhan in China, from which it spread to other countries like fire where more and more people gradually got infected with the disease.
Coronavirus has now touched the peak like never before wherein numerous people are getting infected and a certain number of deaths have taken place. The major challenge comes now where the numbers do not seem to decline but rather keeps increasing day by day.
Now that we have understood that COVID-19 has impacted almost every country in the world and has left no length and breadth of any country in the world to infect, let us take the opportunity to understand and know the virus much closely.
WHAT IS CORONAVIRUS?
Coronavirus is one such virus that is known to cause health problems for human beings which mainly takes place in the form of respiratory infections that range from the common cold to more serious diseases like Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
IS CORONAVIRUS AND COVID-19 DIFFERENT?
COVID-19 is the most recently discovered coronavirus disease which originated from the city of Wuhan from where the outbreak began.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF CORONAVIRUS?
The symptoms of Coronavirus are very much similar to the cold symptoms that a person has like fever, tiredness, dry cough. In addition to these symptoms, the other symptoms are pains and aches, runny nose, sore throat, difficulty in breathing and diarrhoea.
Initially, these symptoms are usually mild but can take serious form within a few days. This point should be noted as people must understand that when infected with COVID-19, there are initially no symptoms as such and also they do not feel unwell.
IS THERE ANY PARTICULAR AGE GROUP THAT IS MORE AT THREAT WITH COVID-19?
Everyone is equally at risk during this coronavirus problem. It can infect and affect anyone irrespective of age. However, certain groups of people who are already facing some illness or immunity are weak due to a health problem or older people having underlying health issues such as high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes should take care of themselves more seriously and take every precautionary measure against the coronavirus.
IS NORMAL FLU A PRECONDITION TO HAVING CORONAVIRUS?
There is a difference between having normal flu and pneumonia-like coronavirus. While normal flu involves cold, cough and fever, the person should still be kept under check and if these symptoms persist then medical help should be sought to cross-check the health status.
CAN PEOPLE RECOVER FROM CORONAVIRUS?
Yes, people can recover from Coronavirus when proper treatment is taken ensuring the quarantine process at the same time. About 80% of people recover from this disease without needing any special treatment. One should be open if one develops any symptom of coronavirus.
HOW DOES CORONAVIRUS SPREAD?
The major way of catching COVID-19 is from others who have themselves been infected with this disease. There are numerous channels through which coronavirus can spread via humans like the small droplets from the nose or mouth when a person coughs, sneezes or exhales. These can primarily spread by inhaling these droplets. These droplets also land on the objects and surfaces around the person and if anyone touches these surfaces then one can catch COVID-19. Due to these two ways of spreading, it is advised for everyone to maintain 1 metre (3 feet) distance from each other.
WHAT KIND OF PROTECTION SHOULD I UNDERTAKE FROM CORONAVIRUS?
Self-precautions are the best precautions. If one takes care of oneself, then everyone in the community will remain safe. It all boils down to the efforts taken individually.
Certain precautions should be taken by an individual to reduce the risk of catching COVID-19. Only if every individual takes the effort to protect oneself and ensure that their homes and surroundings are also clean then the coronavirus can be combated with the collective efforts.
- Wash hands regularly with soap or sanitize hands with an alcohol-based sanitizer frequently every day.
- It will kill the viruses that are present on your hands.
- Maintain a distance of 1 metre from the other person especially if he or she is coughing or sneezing. The droplets that are released from the coughing and sneezing of a person can be taken in by another person via breathing and hence cause coronavirus.
- Avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth. Hands keep touching various surfaces and can get the virus. When one touches eyes, nose and mouth then the virus can get transferred and hence enter the body causing COVID-19.
- Follow Good respiratory hygiene.
- Covering mouth and nose is important to prevent the highly infectious disease from entering the body.
- Stay home if not well and call for medical support if the symptoms of COVID-19 persist.If one is not feeling well, then, he or she should stay at home in order to prevent the COVID-19 to spread to other people.
- Be updated on virus hotspot areas.
It is for making people aware of the risk of travelling to these places where COVID-19 has already affected people. Special care should be taken by the older people and people with medical issues like diabetes, heart or lung disease.
WHAT PROTECTION MEASURES SHOULD BE TAKEN BY THOSE WHO HAVE VISITED COVID-19 REGIONS?
The following points need to be kept in mind for those who have come from the COVID-19 affected areas:
- Follow the above guidelines that are given for the individual protection from the coronavirus.
- Follow self-isolation at home when one has similar symptoms of the coronavirus such as headache, fever ( above 37.3-degree celsius ), runny nose.
- Ensure that one who is having these mild symptoms wears masks and maintains distance and also should wear masks if going out to buy the essential food items.
- Immediately call for medical help when the symptoms turn serious such as fever, cough and difficulty in breathing as this may lead to respiratory infection or other serious health condition. It is important for one to inform about every activity one did and about the travel history so that proper action can be taken for the patient and prevent others from getting the virus.
Therefore, these are some of the main and basic information on coronavirus that people should be aware of and must know how and when the coronavirus spreads. It is the duty of every person to act like a health warrior, ensuring that they take enough protection and measures to keep themselves and others safe at the same time.
BY RG Hospital