Coronavirus (COVID-19): Symptoms, Awareness and Prevention

The unprecedented outbreak of the coronavirus has led the world to witness the toughest lockdown ever. Declared pandemic by the WHO chief Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the new coronavirus (officially called SARS-CoV-2) has posed a global threat.

The respiratory disease COVID-19 causes flu-like symptoms such as a cough, fever, and in more severe cases, difficulty breathing. 

To fight this global health emergency, quarantine or social distancing is the only way out as no vaccine is available yet. 
   

You need to break the chain of transmission of coronavirus. Stay home, stay safe. One person can make a big difference.

About Coronavirus

The novel coronavirus has been first identified in Wuhan, China in December 2019. The virus appeared to have originated in animals. SARS-CoV-2 seems to be genetically closest to bat coronavirus. Pangolin is believed to be the intermediate species. 

Coronavirus covid19 spread world
The corona virus has swept the globe. It is spreading from person to person at an unprecedented pace. The virus uses a surface glycoprotein to bind to host cells. This protein gives the virus a crownlike appearance hence it got the name “corona”.

The virus affects the upper respiratory tract and the mortality rate ranges between 2-3%. The risk is more for elderly people (60 and above) and in people with pre-existing health conditions.

How Coronavirus Spreads

coronavirus spread prevention

An infected person can spread the infection to a healthy person. The droplets produced on coughing or sneezing can enter through mouth, eye or nose. Close contact with an infected person can result in getting the infection. The virus is also spreading via contaminated surfaces and items. 

You can get infected if:

  • You have come in close contact with an infected person.
  • If you have travelled to corona affected areas like China, Iran, Italy.
  • If you touch contaminated surfaces or items.

Symptoms of Coronavirus

coronavirus covid19 symptoms

The symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in 2-14 days of exposure. The symptoms can be mild to severe.

  • Headache
  • Sore Throat
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Shaking Chills
  • Diarrhoea

Is There Any Treatment for Coronavirus?

There is no treatment for COVID-19, only the symptoms can be taken care of medically. As of now, there is no vaccine available. Prevention is the only cure!

Many laboratories are working to devise a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, but animal testing and human clinical trials will take some time.

It is expected that during the summer months (warm weather) the spread of COVID-19 can be curbed. But it can not yet be confirmed.

How To Protect Yourself From Coronavirus?

coronavirus covid19 symptoms precautions

Anyone can get affected by this virus by directly breathing in virus-laden droplets in the air. You can catch the virus indirectly if you touch contaminated surfaces and then end up touching your face. 

Read below the ways you can protect yourself from catching the deadly virus:

  • Wash your hands with soap several times in a day for 20 seconds each time.
coronavirus covid19 wash hands for 60 seconds

  • You can use hand sanitizer with over 60 per cent alcohol.
coronavirus covid19 how to use hand sanitizer

  • When washing or using sanitizer,  it's effective only if you would include each finger, fingernails and the front and back of your hands, all the way to your wrists.
  • Avoid touching your mouth, eyes and nose as the mucous membranes can give the virus easy entry into your body.
  • If someone is sneezing or coughing, maintain 1-2 metre (3-6 feet) distance from him as you can breathe in virus-laden droplets.
  • If you are sick then use disposable face masks so that other people don't get infected when you sneeze or cough. Or use the inside of your elbow (bent elbow) or tissue while sneezing or coughing.

Are Disposable Surgical Masks Helpful?

Disposable surgical masks are not very helpful in saving you from the tiny virus particles. The edges can give an easy way to the virus. Also, people can touch the mask again and again to adjust it. Putting it on and taking it off too can be tricky as the virus can sneak in.

The N95 masks with the firmer exterior are considered a better option in blocking the virus. If not worn properly, it too can pose risk.

Are Disposable Gloves Useful? 

Gloves too can pose risk, giving you a false sense of security as you may end up touching your face with contaminated gloves. So be extra careful.

Coronavirus Remains On Surfaces For Hours Up To Days

Various researches are going on to study the deadly virus. Scientists have found that the virus could remain airborne for up to 3-4 hours post aerosolization.

The virus can stay on various surfaces for few hours to few days. As per one research on stainless steel and plastic, it can stay for 2-3 days. On copper, it can stay for up to 4 hours, one day on cardboard and the virus can even start in our hair. This is the reason why washing hands and cleaning surfaces is essential or rather crucial.

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