Top Ten Ways to Stay Healthy During the Coronavirus Scare

By KC O'Neill, Reporter

COVID-19, also known as coronavirus, has majorly impacted the world. Many stores are temporarily closing, the economy is taking a big hit, and case numbers are rising. There have been over 32 thousand cases in the United States, and over 335 cases worldwide. 

This image is on the front of the Response plan for the COVID-19 pandemic created by the US Department of Health and Human Services, dated March 13, 2020. Image Courtesy of the United States Department of Health and Human Services / Public domain

Here are ten ways to stay safe and healthy to minimize the risk of contracting COVID-19:

  1. Stay home.

Self-quarantine is one of the smartest ways to stay out of harm’s way.  By staying home, you eliminate the possibility of giving anyone else the virus, and you prevent yourself from contracting it. 

  1. Not just the “vulnerable” can be affected.

It was thought that people with weak immune systems are more likely to contract the coronavirus. While that is true, it was also thought that young adolescents could not be affected. New research has shown anyone, at any age, can get the virus.

  1. Call your doctor or get in contact with a health professional if you notice any symptoms. 

This allows them to prepare for your visit. When you go, wear a mask to prevent spreading. Common symptoms include fever, dry cough, fatigue, difficulty breathing and shortness of breath. Symptoms can appear anywhere from two days up to two weeks after exposure. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention posted the symptoms to advise the public. Photograph by @CDCgov via Twitter
  1. Avoid public transportation.

Even if you are not sick, avoiding public transportation is advised. People who might have been infected could have unknowingly affected those areas. 

  1. Open windows. 

It is a smart idea to manage airflow in your home. Increasing ventilation and going outdoors reduces the risk of infection. 

  1. Don’t share food. 

Sharing food increases the risk of germs and pathogens being transferred. 

  1. Wash your hands, and use hand sanitizer. 

Since the coronavirus is a respiratory virus, it is spread when mucus or droplets containing the virus get into your body through your eyes, nose or throat. When washing your hands, you should use warm water, lather soap and scrub the surface of your hands completely for about 20-30 seconds, and use a single-use towel or clean hand towel to dry your hands. 

  1. Don’t touch your face.

Even if your hands are clean, you still could be exposed. Limiting contact with your face reduces the spreading of the disease. 

  1. Regularly disinfect surfaces. 

Cleaning countertops, doorknobs, handrails, etc. will keep you in the habit of practicing good hygiene. Disinfecting everyday surfaces will eliminate the possibility of spreading the virus. 

Vice President Pence posted guidelines to stay healthy during this time. Image by @Mike_Pence via Twitter
  1. Stay calm and aware. 

As long as people follow these precautions, they should stay healthy and safe. Maintaining your knowledge of the pandemic will keep you up to date with the government’s decisions and the progress of the disease. Staying calm and aware will ease the situation not only for you but also for the people around you. Governor Tom Wolf advises Pennsylvania residents to avoid travel and limit large gatherings. 

These tips are everyday tasks that mostly everyone is capable of completing. Other guidelines can be found at coronavirus.gov, the federal website the CDC has provided similar advice.