The coronavirus has affected nearly every country and community in the world. Here in the United States, most communities are subject to stay-at-home orders and travel restrictions. These measures, along with some simple recommended behavioral changes from the CDC and WHO, are helping to “flatten the curve,” or reduce the total number of people infected by the virus.
To help empower people to protect themselves, Dunwoody Pines Retirement Community in Dunwoody, Georgia, has put together an explanation of some simple measures you can take to protect yourself, and how they work.
Because of the way the virus spreads, stay-at-home orders, travel restrictions, and social distancing are necessary to keep the virus from moving from person to person. That’s because the virus spreads in close quarters. When someone coughs or sneezes, they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth, which may contain the virus. People in the area can possibly breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus, if the person coughing or sneezing is infected.
A simple way to protect yourself is to limit your exposure to strangers, anyone displaying symptoms of the virus, and anyone who does not live in your home with you. Try to limit shopping trips to once per week, and work from home if at all possible. When you do have to go out, the CDC recommends leaving a 6-foot space between you and others in order to limit the close contact that can result in the virus spreading.
When an infected person coughs or sneezes, the droplets they release could also land on surfaces and survive for anywhere from a few hours up to several days. If someone were to touch such a surface and then touch their face, they could become infected with the virus.
The CDC recommends cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces daily. These surfaces include tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, tablets, remotes, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
Remember that cleaning and disinfecting are two different processes! If surfaces are dirty, clean them with soap and water first. Then, use a disinfectant such as a bleach or alcohol solution to kill any bacteria or viruses present on the surface.
Because you never know when you may touch an infected surface, it’s important to wash your hands several times throughout the day, especially prior to eating, preparing food, or touching your face.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, you can use a hand sanitizer; the CDC recommends using a product that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of our hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Even if you don’t think you’ve been exposed to the coronavirus, check in with yourself daily and monitor carefully for symptoms. The symptoms of the virus can appear anywhere from 2-14 days after your exposure to the virus. According to the CDC, symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. The CDC states that if you know you were exposed to someone with the virus, or if you have any of these symptoms, stay away from others (including other people and pets in your home) and stay home except to seek medical care.
With just these few simple changes, you can limit your chances of exposure to the coronavirus and help prevent illness.
To learn more about residency or to schedule a tour of Dunwoody Pines, contact our friendly team today.