What is corona and what can I do about it?Coronavirus or corona is a small germ (too small to see with the bare eye) that can spread and cause illness in people. Corona causes flu-like symptoms such as a dry cough, shortness of breath, fever, and body aches. Corona mostly affects the respiratory system. While most infections are not dangerous, it can cause pneumonia (a serious infection of the lungs) and can be deadly in severe cases.
Anyone can get corona. Elderly people and people who already have other illnesses, for example respiratory illnesses, cancer or diabetes, are at greater risk to experience more severe effects.
Corona spreads from an infected person in droplets released when they breathe, cough, or sneeze on people, surfaces, or on food. It enters the body through the mouth, nose, and eyes. Once in the body, it begins to multiply and spread to other areas. Corona can live in the body for up to 14 days before outward signs of illness appear. So people can have corona and not know it, and transmit the virus to others.
Currently there is no vaccine or specific medicine for corona. Corona is not killed by antibiotics or home remedies. Corona can only be prevented by avoiding contact with it and frequent hand washing.
To prevent infection, wash your hands with soap and water. Do so, even when your hands are not visibly dirty. Wash vigorously under running water for 20 seconds with soap, making sure to scrub beneath fingernails and cover the entire hand and wrist. Washing your hands with soap and water kills viruses that may be on your hands. Always wash hands before, during and after you prepare food, after toilet use, before eating, when caring for the sick, after handling animals or animal waste, and after you cough, sneeze, or blow your nose.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth without first washing your hands. Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
It is very important to avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough or other respiratory symptoms. When coughing or sneezing, always cover your mouth and nose with your flexed elbow or with a tissue. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately. Do not spit in public.
Maintain at least 1 meter (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing. Avoid close contact with anyone that has fever and cough.
If you need to take care of a person who has fever, cough and difficult breathing, do not forget to wear a protective mask or cloth mask and in particular, to practice hand hygiene.
To prevent corona, it is safest to avoid physical contact to others. Corona and other viruses can be passed by shaking hands and later touching your eyes, nose and mouth. So when meeting others, do not greet them by shaking hands, hugging or kissing. Greet people with a wave, a nod or a bow instead. If you think there is corona in your area, stay at home to avoid contact with others.
Stay at home if you begin to feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover. If you are sneezing, have a dry cough, difficulty breathing and a fever, seek medical help early as this may be due to a respiratory infection or other serious condition.
False beliefs and rumors about corona can be very dangerous and even kill people. For example, drinking substances like bleach or alcohol will harm you instead of preventing corona. Even information you receive from friends or close relatives can be incorrect or dangerous. Only follow accurate public health advice from your local health authority.
You can help fight corona by spreading this message. Please share it with your friends and family, preferably using a messaging service like WhatsApp.
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