Image source = https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/apr/22/earth-day-bypasses-virus-with-journey-into-gaming-world
We all know due to continuous spread of highly contagious COVID-19, the world is not in a good shape today. Number of reported cases infected with the deadly virus has been on a constant rise throughout the world. The people of our country have been advised to stay home. The country is under lockdown. The world has come to a standstill. Under such a crisis we all need to take care of family and ourselves.
Firstly, it is crucial to understand what COVID-19 is and how it spreads.COVID-19 is a disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus. ‘CO’ stands for corona, ‘VI’ for virus, and ‘D’ for disease. Formerly, this disease was referred to as ‘2019 novel coronavirus’ or ‘2019-nCoV.’ The COVID-19 virus is a new virus linked to the same family of viruses as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and some types of common cold.The main causes for its spread are- air by cough or sneeze, personal contact, contaminated objects and mass gatherings. The symptoms include- dry cough, high fever, sore throat and difficulty in breathing.
Following are some facts about COVID-19:
- People of all ages CAN be infected by the coronavirus. Older people, and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease) appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill with the virus.
- Cold weather and snow CANNOT kill the Coronavirus.
- Hand dryers are NOT effective in killing the coronavirus.
- There is NO evidence that regularly rinsing the nose with saline has protected people from infection with the coronavirus.
- The coronavirus CAN be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates.
- Ultraviolet light SHOULD NOT be used for sterilization and can cause skin irritation.
- Garlic is healthy but there is NO evidence from the current outbreak that eating garlic has protected people from the coronavirus.
- The coronavirus CANNOT be transmitted through mosquito bites.
- Thermal scanners CAN detect if people have a fever but CANNOT detect whether or not someone has the coronavirus.
- Antibiotics DO NOT work against viruses, antibiotics only work against bacteria.
- There is NO evidence that companion animals/pets such as dogs or cats can transmit the coronavirus.
- Spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body WILL NOT kill viruses that have already entered your body.
- To date, there is NO specific medicine recommended to prevent or treat the coronavirus.
- Taking a hot bath DOES NOT prevent the coronavirus.
- Vaccines against pneumonia, such as pneumococcal vaccine and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccine, DO NOT provide protection against the coronavirus.
- You can recover from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Catching the new coronavirus DOES NOT mean you will have it for life.
- Being able to hold your breath for 10 seconds or more without coughing or feeling discomfort DOES NOT mean you are free from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) or any other lung disease. The best way to confirm if you have the virus producing COVID-19 disease is with a laboratory test.
- Drinking alcohol does not protect you against COVID-19 and can be dangerous.
Following measures must be taken to slow down and prevent the spread of COVID-19:
As with other respiratory infections like the flu or the common cold, public health measures are critical to slow the spread of illnesses. Public health measures are everyday preventive actions that include:
- Staying home when sick.
- Covering mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue when coughing or sneezing.
- Dispose of used tissue immediately.
- Washing hands often with soap and water.
- Cleaning frequently touched surfaces and objects.
Some key points on how to beat the disease:
- Don’t fear and don’t panic- sprouting fear can cause more damage to us. As the mortality rate is low and due to early care, the chances of recovery(that takes approximately a week) are high. The people are scared because of the social stigma attached to it. We must know the facts as facts minimize fear. Let’s be positive and hopefuland we willfight the disease.
- We must use homemade reusable face cover, particularly when we step out of our house to help protect the community at large. But it is not recommended for health workers, those working with or in contact with COVID-19 patients and COVID-19 patients, as they are required to wear specified protective gear.
- The Ministry of AYUSH has released a list of Ayurveda approved practices that can help us boost our immunity during the current times. They are enumerated as under:
- Drinking warm water throughout the day.
- Daily practise of yoga. This can include Yogasna, Pranayama and meditation for at least 30 minutes daily.
- Incorporate spices like Turmeric (Haldi), Cumin (Jeera) and Coriander (Dhaniya) in your daily cooking. These spices are known to help boost immunity through the study of Ayurveda.
- Take one tablespoon full (10gm) of Chyavanprash every morning. However, diabetic patients should make sure they only have sugar free versions.
- Drink herbal tea (kadha). Your kadha should include Tulsi, Dalchini (Cinnamon), black pepper, dry ginger (Shunthi) and raisins. You can also add Jaggery (Gur) and fresh lemon juice according to your taste. Drink this concoction at least twice a day.
- Add half teaspoon of Turmeric (Haldi) in a glass of warm milk and drink it once or twice a day.
- For dry cough/sore throat- steam inhalation with Mint (pudina) leaves or Ajwain (caraway seeds) once a day. Taking Lavang (clove) powder mixed with sugar or honey once or twice a day can improve the condition.
There is no vaccine available to cure COVID-19 currently but we can all be cautious at every stage. We must follow guidelines issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) or Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) from time to time.
Asstt. Manager ((Environment)