Yesterday afternoon, the World Health Organization officially labeled COVID-19, commonly referred to as Coronavirus, a pandemic. Currently, the disease is present in 114 countries and spreading quickly. There is a quite a lot of misinformation and panic, especially if you fall down a Google rabbit hole, but with the right precautions and some basic hygiene, you can go a long toward keeping you and your family safe and healthy. In today’s blog, your Astoria, NY, dentist will be covering a few tips for staying safe during the pandemic.
Wash Your Hands!
Do you know what works way better at keeping people safe than a mask? Washing your hands. The fact is, even if we do wash our hands, we may not be doing so properly. Each time, use soap and warm water. Wash your hands of at least twenty seconds (singing Happy Birthday twice, or really any chorus of your favorite song, is usually a good way to time yourself). Make sure soap reaches every surface of your hands, even your fingertips and the back of your hands! Here’s a good source on proper hand washing.
In many areas around the world, quarantines are being put in place to encourage people to stay home and slow the spread of the virus. Does that mean you fly through the store in a panic buying every ounce of toilet paper? No. But think about what you need to hang out at home for two weeks. Pastas, rice, and beans are good non-perishable foods. If you purchase hand sanitizer, make sure it contains at least 60% alcohol.
Avoiding Public Gatherings and Activities
The virus spreads through droplets, the kind released by sneezing or coughing, and your risk of contracting it is high when you’re within six feet of an infected person. The virus can also live on surfaces for several hours. Which means you can limit your risk of exposure when it hits your area by avoiding large gatherings. Don’t got the movies for a couple of weeks, avoid events that put you into contact with large numbers of people. Many companies are encouraging people to work from home.
What If I Think I Have It?
Symptoms appear around one to two weeks after exposure, and include a high fever, shortness of breath, and coughing. Runny noses typically are not a symptom. Many of these symptoms are the same as the flu, but regardless, take precautions if you exhibit symptoms. Stay home, wear a mask around others, and be sure to clean and disinfect surfaces you touch. Avoid family members and friends, especially if they’re older or have illnesses that weaken their immune system. Contact your doctor if you think you may have it, don’t just show up at the office. You can also find more information as the situation unfolds here:
Do You Have Questions About Proper Hygiene?
If you have any questions about addressing the pandemic, or if you need to reschedule a visit, then please contact our team. To learn more about staying healthy and better oral health, then schedule a consultation, call Jeffrey Leibowitz, DDS, in Astoria, NY, today at 718-728-8320.