During this time of uncertainty when it feels as though you have little control over what is occurring, there are some things that can be in your control. Remember that knowledge is power. Be powerful and know the 4 things that matter: how close you get; how long you are near the person; whether that person projects viral droplets on you; and how much you touch your face.
The power to protect yourself and the ones you love involves knowing this:
1. The Covid-19 is spread through air droplets so keep away from anyone coughing and stay 6 feet away from folks in general. If you can smell someone’s breath you are most likely breathing in his or her air droplets.
a. Stay home and avoid public places.
b. Avoid playgrounds, as these are often not disinfected.
c. Avoid play dates and sleepovers.
d. Limit your family to a ‘buddy family’ that can help with childcare and perhaps share grocery shopping with to limit public exposure.
e. Avoid using grandparents and older folks to care for children.
f. Get outside and enjoy some fresh air every day and keep the air circulating in your home.
2. Covid-19 is broken down by soap. The protein on the cell wall is fragile to soap, so wash hands and teach those you love to wash them well too. Once you’re done, do it again. Most importantly do not touch your face as germs enter through the nose, eyes, and mouth.
3. Covid-19 can live on surfaces for up to 9 days. Clean those surfaces that you or others have touched often. If you have a cough or know someone that does make sure that coughing into the elbow occurs.
4. If you do go into public such as the grocery store, bring hand sanitizer with you in your pocket to use after touching any surface. To make your own, refer to this website: https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-make-hand-sanitizer
The power to know what to look for and what to do involves this:
1. Symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath. There have been reports of no symptoms, so again staying home and away from others is important.
2. If you do develop symptoms, call your health care provider and they will let you know what to do. If they tell you to quarantine or isolate do the following:
a. Quarantine measures are to protect others if you may have been exposed to the virus. Stay away from other people for 14 days by not going in public and hanging out with yourself at home.
b. Isolate is to protect others if you have the virus. Stay in a room by yourself. Have someone deliver meals to your door and they should avoid coming into your room if possible. Use the bathroom after everyone else and use your own towels and toiletries.
Be smart. Be Kind. Be Calm. Be checking on our most vulnerable.