By Dr Kedar Toraskar, head Intensivist, Wockhardt Hospital, South Bombay

To keep coronavirus COVID-19 at bay, you will have to follow some essential tips. Here is what you should do and avoid. Read on to know more about this, and stay healthy.

Coronaviruses (CoV) belong to a large family of viruses that may lead to respiratory illnesses, ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). Likewise, earlier this year, a new strain of coronavirus was discovered, which has not been previously identified in human beings, also known as a novel coronavirus (nCov). Are you aware? COVID-19 is a virus that causes respiratory disease and in serious cases it can lead to pneumonia.

These are the symptoms of coronavirus

If one exhibits symptoms such as respiratory symptoms, fever, cough or shortness of breath then he/she may suffer from coronavirus. More severe cases of COVID-19 can cause pneumonia and severe acute respiratory syndrome. These symptoms can be particularly dangerous for elderly patients or people with existing health conditions. Do not delay if you spot these symptoms when it comes to your loved ones or yourself.

Do not forget to follow these dos and don’ts

  • Social distancing is an important public health intervention that can help stop coronavirus transmission by keeping away from crowds, large gatherings like weddings, concerts, events and parties. Try to maintain distance from people.
  • Do maintain good personal hygiene. Stick to a proper handwashing technique. You must wet your hands and apply soap. Then, lather your hands by rubbing them together with the help of soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers and even, don’t forget your nails. Scrub and rinse your hands and dry them with a clean towel.
  • Do cover your mouth while coughing and sneezing or wear a mask.
  • Avoid contact with one who has a cold or cough.
  • Avoid travel, if you have fever, cough, cold or breathlessness and immediately consult your doctor.
  • The SARS coronavirus (Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is a viral respiratory illness caused by a coronavirus called SARS-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) – at a temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degree Celcius) tends to last for 2 days on steel, 4 days on wood and glass, 5 days on metal, plastic, and ceramics. The virus lasts for up to 96 hours at room temperature on the screen of the smartphone and the plastered wall for 36 hours. Alcohol wipes should be sued to clean the glass of the phone. Turn off your phone and clean it with a microfiber cloth. Make sure you clean all the surfaces and objects after touching.
  • Wash your hands before cooking, eating, using the washroom or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Do not panic at the same time follow the above-mentioned points
  • Do not spread false information about covid19 through the social media
  • Follow the WHO/CDC/INDIAN HEALTH MINISTRY sites for authentic information and updates