How does COVID-19 spread?
You may have tons of questions about the novel coronavirus and one of these questions will definitely be about understanding how this virus spreads.
To understand this you will first have to know about some basics of this virus. The novel coronavirus is SARS-CoV-2 which is its clinical name. This is an acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The origin of this virus traces to a family of other viruses that are responsible to cause respiratory issues and respiratory syndrome.
The novel coronavirus is a new strain. This means that the virus is not familiar with the human immune system. This also means that there is still no vaccine for this virus.
When a person comes in contact with the coronavirus then he is diseased with the virus COVID-19. The virus is respiratory. It means that respiratory droplets are the carrier of this virus.
Here is how the novel coronavirus gets spread from one person to another. You should also take care to understand the protection methods from this new virus strain.
How does coronavirus spread from one to another?
The main transmission method of this virus is the person to person contact. Imagine that you are sitting close to a person who is already infected with this virus. The infected person sneezes or coughs and you catch the virus. If the infected does not cover his nose and mouth then they can immediately spread it to you. If the droplets land on you then you get infected with the virus.
You can also contact the virus when someone who already has the virus touches his or her mouth or nose with his hand. When you shake hands with this person then they transfer the virus to you. Once you touch your nose or your mouth without washing your hand you give the virus entry into your body and thus you are now infected too.
There is also a study to understand if coronavirus spreads through feces. It may contaminate the bathroom and the toilet bowls. Further research, however, is needed to understand this method of transmission.
Spreading the virus without any symptoms
WHO states that if one does not show symptoms of coronavirus then his chances of spreading it to others are very low. But here there is some bad news. Experts are countering the views of WHO and say that there have been cases where one who did not show any symptoms of coronavirus passed it to others. The carrier was not even aware of the fact that he was sick.
A person is most contagious when he is showing symptoms of the virus and this is when they are more likely to transmit the virus. However, there could be some who may transmit the virus even before they show any symptoms. It could take 2 days to 14 days to show up the symptoms of coronavirus after one has been exposed to the virus.
Though there is still no cure for this virus, proper sanitization and hygiene methods should be followed to stay safe.
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How can you protect yourself from CORONAVIRUS
It is difficult to not be exposed to the coronavirus virus at all, especially if you have people around you who have been infected with the coronavirus. However, there are some ways in which you can stay protected.
- Stand back from people who are sneezing or coughing. The minimum distance is 3 feet from those who are sick.
- Wash your hands using soap and water thoroughly for 20 seconds each time.
- Use an alcohol-based sanitizer. The alcohol content should be at least 60%. You may use a sanitizer if you do not have soap and water available readily.
- Do not touch your face. The virus gets transmitted easily from our nose, eyes, and mouth and you may not even realize it.
- Social isolation is important. Stay at home and avoid groups of people who could make you exposed to coronavirus.
- As of now, it is not necessary to wear a mask to prevent yourself from the virus. However, if you feel sick then you should wear a mask especially when you are around other people.
Can coronavirus be picked up from a surface that is infected?
The germs can lurk in possibly all the surfaces that you touch. Experts are still not sure about whether coronavirus can survive on the surfaces. However, if the virus is similar to the other virus then the time of survival could be varied. It depends on the surface type, the humidity, the temperature in the room and the environment that decides whether or not the virus will survive on a particular surface.
Since we are not aware of the same it is advised to disinfect the surface to clean it of any contamination. Also, if someone at home is sick then it is even more important to keep cleaning the surfaces regularly.
Symptoms of coronavirus
The symptoms of coronavirus are the same as some other respiratory diseases. The common symptoms observed are cough, fever, and shortness of breath. Body aches and chills or other symptoms of flu are hardly noticed.
Shortness of breath is common with COVID-19 as compared to seasonal cold and seasonal flu.
If you feel that you are having symptoms of coronavirus then do not delay in isolating yourself. Staying away from social contact will slow down the transmission of the virus.
What do you do if you are infected with coronavirus?
If you think that you may be infected with coronavirus then do not delay in contacting your doctor immediately. Your doctor should know about your symptoms and he will be the right person to advise you on what should be done. They can get you in touch with the local authority to understand if you need to get tested for the virus.
You should also limit your exposure to others. Household items should not be shared.
If there are others around you then use a face mask to cover your mouth and your nose. Use a tissue when you sneeze or cough and discard away the tissue.
You must seek immediate medical care if you show any signs of coronavirus.
The future ahead
With time, experts will get to know more about the novel coronavirus. They will understand its behavioral pattern and how it gets transmitted. However, for the time being, take special precautions and protective measures like washing hands regularly and maintaining respiratory hygiene so that you can avoid the disease.
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