Protect yourself from Coronavirus
The deadly Coronavirus outbreak, which has claimed more than 3000 lives so far has termed a pandemic. While initially, the virus was confined to mainland China, it has now spread to countries across the world, including Japan, Iran, South Korea, Kuwait, the Middle East and Italy.
Two deaths have been recorded in the USA, as of today. WHO has now marked the impact of this global health emergency from “high” to “extremely high”, with governments imposing strict bans, restrictions and streamlining quarantine and screening processes to limit the risk.
Coronavirus has turned into a pandemic
The Centres of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has also issued travel advisories, cautioning people travelling to countries put on level-1 alert and recommending avoiding non-essential travel at all costs for countries on level-3 alert. High-risk countries like China, South Korea, Iran, Italy have been tagged level-3, which is by far, the highest.
How to keep yourself protected from Coronavirus
Coronavirus symptoms start off with something as simple as cold and can potentially manifest into something severe like respiratory infections, pneumonia and kidney infections.
Avoiding travelling to infection-laden areas is your best bet to protect against Coronavirus if you cannot restrict, change or avoid travelling altogether, here are a few expert-backed preventive measures to keep yourself safe while travelling.
Wash your hands
A basic hygiene habit, washing your hands rigorously can curb the risk of infection spread. When you travel, you come in contact with a lot of places and things which can be a breeding house for germs.
While many use a sanitizer, remember, they can only act as a backup and not replace the effectiveness of handwashing. It is recommended that you wash your hands under lukewarm (or hot) water for a minimum of 20-30 seconds to kill germs.
Prefer to use bottled water and be aware of food contamination
When you are travelling to unknown places, you can’t be fully sure of the quality or purity of food and water. It might also happen that your gut bacteria might not react well to the local produce. Hence, you should be particularly aware of food contamination of any kind.
Since coronavirus infections spread primarily through the poultry market, ensure that any food you consume while you travel is thoroughly cooked, not raw and goes through quality checks. Avoid eating any product which is left exposed for a long time. Be wary of coming in contact with live animals and poultry.
Do not forget to get vaccinated
Although there is no available vaccine available for COVID-19, getting vital flu and infection shots are a good way to lower your chances of developing or catching a common cold, flu and influenza viruses which are all linked to the spread of coronavirus infection and reduce the risk of respiratory infections as well.
If you are travelling internationally, consult your healthcare professional for necessary travel advice.
Make others aware
As important as it is to limit your contact with those who are sick, it is also crucial you maintain distance from others if you are sick or think you are developing symptoms of any disease when you are travelling, on board a flight, train or cruise or in a space where there’s a heavy crowd.
Alert a doctor or a medical professional and get the necessary treatment. If you are returning, practice self-isolation and inform your doctor at once. Avoid close contact with those who are sick, and more importantly those showing cold symptoms, which start as the primary Coronavirus infection symptoms.
Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth frequently
While masks won’t necessarily protect you from infection risk altogether, what one shouldn’t do is frequently touch the eyes, mouth and the nose, especially with unwashed hands.