Simple Strategies

Published: March 19, 2020
Category: General

Help Prevent the Spread of the COVID-19 & Reduce Your Risk of Contracting it

After the World Health Organization declared the Coronavirus a pandemic this month, many of us started taking a closer look at how we could safeguard ourselves from contracting the virus and help prevent its spread throughout the United States and World. Now, more than ever, the choices we make in regards to hygiene habits, cleaning protocols for our homes and places of work, and how much we choose to self-isolate ourselves and our families could have a significant impact on the spread of COVID-19. Although this can sound intimidating, many of the changes you make to your daily routine do not have to be big adjustments.

Wash Your Hands Longer & More Frequently

Whether you sing your ABCs or Happy Birthday to time yourself at the sink, you need to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water to get them clean. If soap is not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Put Your Hair Back

One of the recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is not to touch your face, especially your mouth and eyes. If you have bangs or longer hair, you will be more apt to touch your face to tuck your hair behind your ear or brush it from your eyes. Consider wearing your hair in a ponytail, braid, or headband to resist this urge.

Wipe Down Surfaces FREQUENTLY with Disinfecting Solutions

Think of the surfaces you touch most frequently each day; your laptop, phone, kitchen table, steering wheel, doorknobs, office phone, desks, countertops. Because the Coronavirus can spread by surface contact, it is crucial to get in the habit of wiping all of these surfaces down more frequently. Consider setting a reminder on your phone to reinforce the habit of more regular surface cleaning.

Sneeze & Cough into Your Elbow. Not Your Hands

COVID-19 can be spread through the droplets emitted when we cough and sneeze. Many of us have the habit of sneezing into our hands. Those same hands then touch surfaces. 

Practice and develop the lifelong habit of coughing and sneezing into the crook of your elbow to help prevent this means of spreading.

If you are someone who uses a handkerchief when you cough or sneeze or blow your nose, now is the time to switch to disposable tissues. Tissues should immediately be thrown away after use. You should then wash your hands for at least 20 seconds or use a 60% alcohol hand sanitizer.

Work from Home if You’re Able & Stay Home if You’re Sick

Many people have already transitioned to working remotely from home this past week. If your workplace and industry allow and supports this, it is an effective measure to decrease both the possibility of contracting an illness and spreading it.

If you present any symptoms that resemble those of COVID-19, such as coughing, shortness of breath, fatigue, or fever…STAY HOME. Do not put your health or the health of others in jeopardy by trying to “tough it out.” Now is the time to listen to your body and consider the well-being of others in your community, both locally and throughout the world. Call and reschedule any upcoming appointments you may have. If you are ill, current recommendations are to be home and quarantined for a minimum of 7 days. If you have symptoms longer than 7 days, then you must be fever free for 72 hours before lifting quarantine restrictions. If you have been exposed via a loved one or close contact but don’t have symptoms yourself, then quarantine recommendations are 14 days without symptoms prior to lifting quarantine.

Stock Up on What You Can. BE Prepared

Take a look at your pantry. Now is an excellent time to stock up on healthy non-perishables that provide quality nutrition and sustained energy. Whole wheat pasta, brown rice, canned vegetables, healthy proteins like canned tuna and sardines, non-refrigerated ghee, and olive oil.

Consider stocking beverages such as Gatorade or Pedialyte. These are both high in electrolytes, something your body will need if you become dehydrated from illness or lack of drinking water. Also, you may consider having multi-vitamins, vitamin c, and even zinc lozenges on hand, as they have been shown to boost immunity.

Look at all of your prescriptions. Do you need any refills? Plan for at least a 2-week supply and ask your pharmacy if they offer quarterly refills to get three months of your prescription at once.

Be a Black Sheep, but Stay Connected

Although it may sound strange to express your solidarity by physically distancing yourself from others, this may be the most effective way to prevent you and your family from contracting COVID-19 and the best way to prevent the spread of this virus within your community. Consider avoiding events that have 50 or more people in attendance. If smaller events don’t allow you to stand at least 6 feet away from the person next to you, consider postponing their participation as well. 

Unfortunately, even if you are in an environment of 10 people or less, but those ten people are a higher risk group, such as the elderly, you may even want to avoid that setting.

Physical proximity does not need to equate to emotional connectivity. Call those you love. Send emails. Reach out to the people who matter to you. Although this pandemic has created much anxiety and fear, it is also presenting the opportunity for many of us to reconnect with our families, friends, sense of community, and ourselves.

Our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to our patients for your patience and understanding as we ALL navigate our way through this exceptional situation. If you have any questions regarding a future scheduled appointment with Edina Plastic Surgery, please call (952) 925-1765.

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