From just a flu to a deeply deadly disease, the novel Coronavirus doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. In many cases, people who become infected get over the virus without any complications; there’s even a high possibility that many of them have already been infected without knowing. For that, check out these 14 Signs You’ve Already Had Coronavirus Earlier This Year. But for many other people, the virus could come with serious complications and even be life-threatening.
Needless to say, we should not underestimate this virus and what it can do. On the other hand, we should not live our lives in panic, hidden under a rock. That being said, check out these 10 things that cut off your panic about the coronavirus.
We know more about the disease and how to test it
When the first cases had surfaced in Wuhan, China, scientists and health experts managed to identify the virus rather quickly. Only a few days after the coronavirus had been officially identified, a test to detect the virus was developed and put into use.
Compared to other past viruses that took much longer to be identified, this prompt detection means that researchers are also remarkably close to developing an effective vaccine and treatment. Vaccines usually require years but in the case of COVID-19, scientists all over the world are racing to find a cure by next year.
It’s getting better in China where it was first reported
Since it first emerged in Wuhan, Hubei Province, around 90 000 people in China have been infected with the novel coronavirus, and at the moment, around 52,000 of those have recovered. As of October 2020, China had confirmed 4739 deaths. This means that, although the situation in the United States is far worse than that in China, the vast majority of people that contract the virus should be able to recover. This also suggests that the number of recoveries should also increase around the world.
80% of cases involve mild symptoms
COVID-19 seems to affect older adults and those with underlying conditions such as diabetes, chronic heart and lung conditions, more than other people. Some can contract coronavirus and not have any symptoms, therefore not knowing that they are infected. Others get it but experience mild to moderate symptoms, which require minor or zero special treatment. The most common symptoms of coronavirus include high fever, difficulty breathing, cough and muscle pain. Be on the lookout for those but also for these 6 New Coronavirus Symptoms the CDC Wants You to Watch Out For.
Children are not affected as hard
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “while fewer children have been sick with COVID-19 compared to adults, children can be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, can get sick from COVID-19 and can spread the virus that causes COVID-19 to others. Children, like adults, who have COVID-19 but have no symptoms (“asymptomatic”) can still spread the virus to others”. The good news, if we can call it that, is that most children develop mild symptoms or no symptoms. See also Are Children Coronavirus Super-Spreaders? Recent Studies Explain.
Keeping children healthy requires the same everyday preventive measures as in the case of adults: wash hands, wear masks and maintain social distance. When it comes to children, it’s recommended to also launder and sanitize items such as their favorite stuffed animals or blankets they usually take with them, especially in public places.
Most people recover
The coronavirus diseases affected more than 40 million people worldwide and around 30 million people have recovered from it. Sadly, more than one million have died because of the virus and related complications, with experts warning “it will get worse before it gets better”. What we should focus on is the fact that the chances of recovery are higher than the risks of serious complications and that most of us who will contract COVID-19 will be alright in the end.
Health experts and authorities cannot reiterate this enough: it’s crucial that we all comply with social distancing rules, practice good hygiene at all times like washing our hands as thoroughly and as frequently as possible and self-isolate if any of us experience COVID-19 symptoms, to protect others around us, especially high-risk individuals.
Cleaning can protect you
According to the CDC, “many diseases and conditions are spread by not washing hands with soap and clean, running water”. Coronavirus makes no exception. Therefore, regular hygiene such as handwashing is one of the best ways to get rid of germs and viruses, avoid getting sick, and stop the spread to other people. Your best weapons against the virus are products like disinfectants, hand soap and hand sanitizers.
Make a habit out of washing your hands for at least 20 seconds, before and after eating, before entering and after leaving places, before and after touching items in public places like ATM machines, elevator buttons, money etc. If using water is not an option, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. And whatever you do, avoid touching your face, steer clear of crowded places or enclosed spaces with too many people inside. Wipe down high-touch surfaces in your home such as tables, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, handles, toilets, sinks etc. This post might help you do it right: Bacteria and Viruses in Your Own House? You Should Clean Now!
Researchers are working on treatments
Since the moment it was first detected, scientists and health experts all over the world embarked on a race against time to find out as much as possible about the virus, how it spreads, how dangerous it can be, how to protect ourselves against it and how to treat it as efficiently as possible. There are numerous available studies and research with essential information about the novel coronavirus, including treatment and vaccines. Here are some of them:
- Blood Type O Might Protect You Against COVID-19, Large-Scale Study Reveals
- Eating Out Puts You at Bigger Risk for COVID-19, Study Says
- Eating Out Puts You at Bigger Risk for COVID-19, Study Says
Treatment and vaccine trials are already in progress
Medical and research companies all over the world started working on various vaccines for COVID-19, with some getting promising results. At the moment, there are 49 vaccines in clinical trials on humans, and more than 85 preclinical vaccines under active investigation in animals. We might not get an efficient vaccine by the end of this year, as trials, approval stages, manufacturing and distribution can take a long time, but the findings can be extremely useful in the case of future outbreaks.
In terms of treatments, China alone has launched more than 80 clinical trials for various COVID-19 treatments. However, similar to vaccines, treatments can also last for months; so, until a sure treatment is discovered, make sure you have a proper stock of cough medicines, ibuprofen for fever and acetaminophen for headache and muscle aches.
Being prepared is the best defense
Considering the attack rate or transmissibility (how fast the coronavirus spreads), chances are most f us will become infected sooner or later. But instead of panicking, our best shot is to prepare ourselves for what’s to come.
Being quarantined at home might have been difficult at first, for some it still is, but there are ways you can make staying at home more pleasurable. “Over the extended period of quarantine, people may have adjusted to the stress of the pandemic and are now finding comfort in feeling safe from exposure to the virus by being home. What in the early weeks of quarantine may have been challenging is now a ‘new normal’ and people are finding routines at home,” says Arunesh Mishra, M.D. Try to make the most of your time spent at home with these 5 Quarantine Routine Tips to Help Your Sanity! and be happy that you are contributing to curbing the spread of the virus. Also, check out these 14 Lockdown Habits We Should Still Keep After the Pandemic Is Over.
If you feel sick or have been traveling to/from other countries, self-isolation might be your best approach to keeping other people safe. Remember, some can have the virus but not the symptoms, so you could be unknowingly spreading it even if you don’t feel sick. If you have underlying chronic health issues, talk to your doctor about an action plan in case you start experiencing certain symptoms. If you need to go to the hospital, here’s what Your COVID-19 Emergency Bag should include.