What is COVID-19?
It is a new type of virus that can cause breathing difficulties and antiviral pneumonia. It was first encountered in China. COVID-19 is a member of the coronavirus family that has never been seen before, but the family is known since the mid-1960s and the viruses can cause breathing difficulties in both animals and human beings.
How is the virus transmitted?
Many of those initially infected either worked or frequently shopped at a seafood wholesale market in the center of the city, but human-to-human transmission has been confirmed. So if you have recently travelled from areas affected by coronavirus or meet someone who has recently done that, try to avoid:
- droplets of saliva;
- close personal contact (by touching the
person or shaking their hands);
- touching your mouth, nose or eyes after
touching contaminated objects or surfaces.
So is it spreading across the world?
Coronaviruses are transmitted less often than the flu virus and, therefore, the chances of a worldwide epidemic are lower. The virus can be incubated for up to two weeks, time when the first symptoms shall appear after the person becomes infected.
What are the most common symptoms?
The clinical signs and symptoms of the new coronavirus are mainly related to breathing difficulties – similar to flu-like
symptoms. However, in severe cases it can cause pneumonia and organ failure. Major symptoms include:
- breathing difficulties.
Can it be treated?
There is no specific treatment for infections caused by COVID-19. In the case of this new coronavirus, drinking plenty of fluids and resting is recommended. Also, some measures to relieve the symptoms are recommended on a case-by-case basis, such as: taking over-the-counter medications (fever reducers and pain relievers), using humidifiers at home or taking hot baths to help relieving the pain caused by sore throat and coughing. As soon as the first symptoms arise, seek immediate medical attention to get a proper diagnosis and start the treatment as soon as possible.
How can we protect ourselves from getting sick?
Some few actions can minimize your risk of catching the disease, including:
- Keep your house well-ventilated;
- Use disposable tissues to clean your nose;
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth mucus;
- Wash your hands after coughing or sneezing;
- Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze;
- Stay away from people with acute breathing difficulties;
- Stay away from people with symptoms or signs of COVID-19;
- Do not share personal use objects, such as tableware, glasses or bottles;
- Stay away from wild animals and sick animals in farms or live markets;
- Try to wash your hands often, especially after having direct contact with sick people or contaminated areas or environments.