Coronavirus – 3 Key Questions Answered
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.
Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.
The best way to prevent and slow down transmission is be well informed about the COVID-19 virus, the disease it causes and how it spreads. Protect yourself and others from infection by washing your hands or using an alcohol based rub frequently and not touching your face.
The COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes, so it’s important that you also practice respiratory etiquette (for example, by coughing into a flexed elbow).
At this time, there are no specific vaccines or treatments for COVID-19. However, there are many ongoing clinical trials evaluating potential treatments. WHO will continue to provide updated information as soon as clinical findings become available.
Q1: Is it possible I may have been infected with the Coronavirus COVID-19 disease?
A: Do you have any of the following symptoms?
- Fever (temperature higher than 37.6 Degrees Celsius)
- Body aches and pains
- Sore Throat or Dry cough
- Chest pain or shortness of breath
- Few people may report diarrhoea, nausea or a runny nose
- Loss of taste or sense of smell
- Have you just returned a trip in the last 14 days?
- Have you had contact with anyone who just returned from a trip?
- Have you had contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the last 14 days?
- If you answered Yes to any of questions 7, 8 or 9 plus any other 2 questions, or;
- If you answered No to any of questions 7, 8 or 9 but yes to 4 of the other questions.
Immediately contact either the Lagos State Ministry of Health hotlines on; 08000corona, 08023169485, 08033565529, 08052817243, 08028971864, 08059758886, 08035387653 or the NCDC on 07032864444 or 080097000010 (toll-free) for assistance.
Q2: What if they do not respond or tell me to remain at home? What do I do?
- Self-isolate and follow the following guidelines:
- Stay at home
- Do not use public transportation, taxis or ridesharing services.
- Do not go to work, school or other public places.
- Keep away from seniors and people with chronic medical conditions (e.g., diabetes, lung problems, and weakened immune system)
- Stay in a separate room away from other people in your home as much as possible and use a separate bathroom if you have one.
- If you are in a room with other people, keep a distance of at least two meters from others and wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth.
- Wear a mask over your nose and mouth:
- Wear a mask if you must leave your house to see a health care provider.
- Wear a mask when you are within two meters of other people.
- Dishes and eating utensils should be cleaned with dish soap and hot water after each use.
- Clothing and bedclothes can be cleaned using regular laundry soap and water and do not require separation from another household laundry.
2. You can also relieve your symptoms by doing the following:
- Stay hydrated by taking lots of fluids
- Use analgesics (like paracetamol) if you have a fever or body aches
- Rest and sleep
- Keep warm
- Use a room humidifier or take a hot shower to help ease a sore throat and cough.
Q3: What if I don’t have the symptoms and I’m fine?
A: Even if you are convinced you do not have the COVID-19 infection, you must do your bit to slow the spread and keep us safe:
- Wash your hands regularly with soap and water, or clean them with alcohol-based hand rub (at least 60% alcohol)
- Maintain at least 1-meter distance between you and people coughing or sneezing.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.
- Stay well hydrated by taking lots of fluids.
- Refrain from smoking and other activities that weaken the lungs.
- Practice physical distancing by avoiding unnecessary travel and staying away from large groups of people.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes
- Throw used tissues in a lined wastebasket and wash your hands. Lining the wastebasket with a plastic bag makes waste disposal easier and safer.
Let us all be alert and take measures to safeguard our health!