Here’s How You Can Keep Yourself and Others Safe During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By: Rawan Khalil

This year has certainly had a terrible start, with one thing currently being on everyone’s mind, which tends to be brought up in every conversation and is pretty much the reason why we have no school for the next couple of days or weeks. Yes, I am talking about the Corona Virus (COVID-19). The virus was first detected in the city of Wuhan in China and then started spreading across multiple countries that now the WHO has labeled it a Pandemic- which means that the disease is spread across multiple countries. 

The reasons why Coronavirus poses such a threat and is also the reason we are at home right now are: the speed of the spread of the disease and the number of deaths it had. In less than three months, there is a total of 156,622 cases and 5,833 deaths. 

Every country is placing measures to control the situation and the outbreak. Here in Kuwait for example, they gave us four weeks off school and stopped most airplanes coming in and out, and anyone coming in is checked and screened. Malls are also closed to avoid gatherings. In Egypt, there is a two-week break and gathering warning. In the UK Borris wants to try the herd immunity actions, and has said prepare to say goodbye to your loved ones. 

Now, in a situation like this, the number one priority is taking care of your health and so here are a few tips and things to keep in mind:

WASH YOUR HANDS

I can pretty much see an eye roll, but it’s so vital. I know we probably all wash our hands all year round but try to spend more time following the hand washing protocols, and do it more often. This is a video by the NHS so to take a minute and watch that.

I would say invest in Lifebuoy or Dettol soap. Also, carry around Dettol hand sanitizer, let’s skip the Bath and Bodyworks ones because they’re 90% glitter and 10% alcohol, and, for a disinfectant to be effective it needs to be at least 70% alcohol.

Personally, I have an alcohol sanitizer bottle by the door so we would use it once we enter the house. So, do something along the same lines and wash your hands once you enter the house before you interact with anything or anyone else as you don’t want to spread any germs, microbes or viruses to your house. 

MASKS

If you do choose to wear a mask, make sure they’re not one of those pathetic, thin surgical masks but instead the actual thick ones as the other ones are not designed to stop infections as it allows air particles into your body, and COVID-19 is highly contagious. 

Also, if you do wear a mask please do not touch it with your hands. The purpose of the mask is to stop any viruses or microbes from entering your body through your mouth and instead are stuck on the surface of the mask. Touching the mask means that you are taking all these germs, possibly infectious germs and sticking them to your hands and hence transferring them to your food, and your other belongings.

Ya gama3a there is no such thing as ha2la3 el mask w amsek bo2y, ya fara7ety- what was the point of the mask?

AVOID CONTACT

Avoid contact with people and foreign items. If you go out please make sure you clean the table with alcohol wipes before having any contact with it. If you go to the toilet, have toilet-seat sheets to protect your butt from infectious molecules, or alcohol wipes to wipe them. If you open public-bathroom doors disinfect them with wipes first before you touch them- or any doors for that matter. If you have to touch a tap with your hand after washing your hands then disinfect that with wipes as well.

I may sound like a freak but this is just safety. 

Also, avoid handshakes, hugs, and kisses- I know we’re Arabs but safety ladies and gents.

IF YOU’RE SICK

If you’re sick- stay at home, and get tested. Cover your coughs and sneezes and don’t have close contact with people. 

CLOSE BIN LIDS

Okay, you need to keep all the bins in your house covered, don’t leave food open on the kitchen table as all those things attract flies and mosquitos and you never know where they have been previously and what diseases they could carry. 

Try to use Dettol air fresheners to kill any infectious air-borne particles.

CLEAN FREQUENTLY TOUCHED SURFACES

You can dilute your household bleach, or buy disinfectants and start cleaning your doorknobs frequently as well as light switches, kitchen cabinets, kitchen counters, your workspace such as your desk and whatnot. Also, use alcohol wipes to sanitize your keys, your car handles, steering wheels, phone screens, and covers, laptop surfaces- you get the point. 

TRY TO AVOID GATHERINGS

This is one of the WHO guidelines, and well you never know who the other people around you have been in contact with. Here in Kuwait, one man who worked two jobs has been in contact with an insane number of people, and many of them got infected. I guess better safe than sorry. 

Also here are a few articles which you may find interesting if you want to read more into it:

For a live update on stats, and for a visual history of Pandemics.

For more safety tips visit this link and this link.

Stay safe, 

Rawan x

P.S DON’T PANIC.

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