5 Tips to Protect Yourself and Your Home from Viruses
They are a good rule of thumb for the common cold or flu, and don’t just relate to the novel coronavirus.
The world is abuzz with talk of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus that has resulted in a global pandemic. It’s rare to see this kind of global phenomenon that completely consumes the mindshare of practically everybody, but its fast spread and high level of contagiousness make it necessary to understand the threat and take steps to safeguard yourself and your family. Perhaps one good thing about the Covid-19 outbreak, is how it is teaching an entire generation of people proper hygiene and safety habits to prevent the spread of disease.
Here are five tips you can take to help prevent the spread of viruses and other pathogens. They are a good rule of thumb and don’t just relate to the novel coronavirus, you can use these tips to help reduce the incidence of things like the flu or the common cold.
5 Tips on How To Protect Against Viruses
1. Stay healthy
This is the most important thing to keep in mind. Living a healthy lifestyle with exercise, lots of rest, and eating nutritious food is your first line of defence against any disease. Viruses, in general, are not cured with medicine. Cold medicine for instances doesn’t actually cure you of the cold virus. It simply treats the symptoms so you can feel more comfortable, but what actually cures you is your body’s own immune system. If your body has a strong immune system, a virus can be dealt within a short time, or even before symptoms develop. Keep your immune system strong by eating right, getting a lot of sleep, minimising stress, and exercising regularly.
2. Cover your mouth and nose
Coronaviruses tend to spread through water droplets that are spread out into public spaces by people who are infected. Whenever they talk, sneeze, or touch their face and touch another object the virus goes out and can get into your system through your mouth and nose. Using a face mask can help reduce your risk of infection by protecting you from fluids when people cough or sneeze in your presence. Covering your mouth when you sneeze or cough, with a mask or tissue, for instance, is also a good way to prevent spreading the virus. If you are already ill, wearing a mask keeps your liquid emissions to yourself, so you don’t infect other people, like your family.
3. Keep the air clean
While it is unclear at this time how exactly the Covid-19 virus spreads, there is a high possibility the virus is airborne or can be transmitted not just through touch, but through the air itself. Viruses that spread in this manner have an easier time going from person to person if there are a lot of particulates in the air. Tiny PM2.5 and PM10 particles in the air stay airborne for extended periods of time, and when an infected person sneezes the water droplets with the virus in them can latch on to the particulate matter in the air, and this, in turn, can be inhaled by other people, facilitating the spread of the virus.
Keeping the air in your home clean through monitoring can help greatly in reducing airborne infections. Further, particulate matter in the air can put a strain on your immune system, weakening it and making you more susceptible to the virus.
This is where uHoo’s air quality monitor comes in. With its advanced sensors, the uHoo monitor can check the air in your home and let you know if you have PM2.5 particles that can facilitate the spread of the virus, or cause problems that can stress your immune system. Knowledge is power, and knowing there is a problem means you can take the steps to correct it.
4. Wash your hands
This is the standard operating procedure for anyone looking to maintain healthy hygiene. The majority of pathogens you will come into contact with do so through your hands. Most people use their hands the most when interacting with the environment. The table at the cafeteria, your keyboard at work, your smartphone itself, these are hotspots for viruses and other bugs, and you touch them all the time with your hands. This is why washing your hands is extremely important: most viruses and bacteria will not actually get into your body through your hands, but the moment you start touching your face with unwashed hands, all bets are off.
Make it a habit to wash your hands, especially before you eat and when you get home. This washes away any bacteria, viruses or other pathogens that you might have picked up throughout the day. You should also pay attention to your feet and your footwear. Your feet are always in contact with the outside world, and it can pick up pathogens as well, which you bring into your home if you don’t take your footwear off in the house. Have a shoe rack at the porch or at the entry of your apartment, so you don’t bring any pathogens from your feet into your home.
5. Avoid close contact with people
While it is impractical for most people to isolate themselves from the world and everyone else, it is possible to minimise risk by avoiding close contact if it isn’t necessary. Most people can still due to their work in the office without coming into close contact with others or touching them. A handshake is a sign of good faith, but in these times it may be better to avoid it if it isn’t necessary. Children at school can still learn without getting in close contact with others. While this isn’t ideal behaviour, the current virus outbreak isn’t an ideal situation, and it’s important to act with restraint when necessary to reduce risk.
Covid-19 can be very scary, but with due diligence on everyone’s part, it is possible to greatly reduce the risk of infection. In many ways, it is fortunate that the virus is getting so much attention because it is helping educate people and teach them good hygienic habits that can lessen the spread of the disease. And these habits are worth keeping as a lifestyle, leaving you and your family better prepared in dealing will illness in the future.
This article was first published in uHoo and republished on theAsianparent with permission.
uHoo is the most advanced indoor air quality sensor today. It is built with nine air quality parameters that monitor safety thresholds indicated by the EPA and WHO. Learn more about uHoo at https://uhooair.com/.