Getting infected with the Coronavirus is one of the most distressing experiences nowadays – knowing how it can affect you and the people around you – worse if it’s your family, friends, or community are the ones who got involved. The normal reaction of people is to get paranoid that the virus is everywhere, or even panic. Lots of ‘what ifs’ are filling our minds, or the thoughts that you should always be kept secure, clean – you get the idea. But let’s talk about this deeper – how can you self-isolate for 14 days?
Self-isolation means staying at home for 14 days (2 weeks) if you’ve shown symptoms of the virus or if you have a history of traveling in the last 14 days. This is the best way to keep yourself safe. It’s not only for your sake but for the community’s sake.
During these 14 days, you:
- won’t go anywhere outside your house for any reason
- won’t go to work, school or any public areas in general
- won’t buy food outdoors (you can have someone buy it for you or order by phone/online for delivery)
- you must keep a distance from all people, with a minimum of 1-2 meters
It quite an adjustment, especially if you’re the kind of person who works outdoors or has a habit of going outdoors for whatever business. However, patience is needed because it’s for society’s sake. Despite a lot of jobs are not home-based, but you can always ask your employer to work at home if possible because they will allow you even without asking further. Safety first. If you’re a student, you can be excused too.
For the most up-to-date news and information about the coronavirus pandemic, visit the WHO website.
List of the proper response to each scenario:
If you’re looking after your health and well-being while quarantined:
- take medicines like paracetamol if you have symptoms (fever, dry cough, tiredness, difficulty in breathing)
- Wear a facemask when talking to other people
- Keep yourself occupied by doing your hobbies: read a book, write, watch movies, draw, cook, play games, attend webinars, watch vlogs that captures your interests, etc.
- Keep in touch with your friends by calling them via phone or video call them
- Be patient.
- Seek medical attention if you’re a confirmed victim of the Coronavirus.
If you’re living with someone who has symptoms:
- You have to stay with them at home for 14 days until no one has symptoms.
- Keep a distance from them, about 1-2 meters away.
- Keep your surroundings clean by disinfecting the floors, bathroom, walls, etc.
- Don’t share the same items like clothes, beds, seats, utensils, plates, etc.
- Wear facemasks as much as possible.
To reduce the spread of the virus in your home:
- Separate yourself from the others. Limit your contact with other people.
- Wash your hands with soap and water often for at least 20 seconds (same length as the happy birthday song repeated twice)
- Use disinfectants like alcohol or sanitizer gel for your hands.
- Cover your mouth with a tissue or cloth (can be sleeves, EXCEPT your hands) when coughing or sneezing
- Clean the areas that you touch often such as doorknobs, handles, phones, remotes, etc. Use cleaning products like disinfectants.
- Used tissues should be thrown away immediately after usage and wash your hands afterward.
If you’re living with an old or vulnerable person
Old people are known to be more vulnerable than younger ones due to their weaker immune systems. They can have a pre-existing condition like diseases and it can be diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, etc. These people are more at risk from COVID-19. If you’re living with them, you can continue normal activities but reduce contact with them as much as possible.
Don’t shake your dirty laundry, because there are chances that the virus will spread through the air. Laundry the possible affected clothes would be okay, as long as it will be separated from the others. If in case you don’t have a washing machine, wait until 72 hours (3 days) after your 14-day isolation period before taking it to the laundry shop.
If you’re breastfeeding:
Presently, there are no clinical shreds of evidence that the virus can be transmitted through breast milk. However, the benefits of breastfeeding usually outweigh any potential risks of transmission of the virus through breast milk or by being in close contact with your child. Here are the tips on how to minimize the child from exposure:
- Wash your hands before and after touching the baby, towels, breast pump or bottles.
- Avoid coughing or sneezing when feeding the baby.
- Clean the breast pump as recommended.
There are lots of things to consider during the isolation period. Staying away from your normal routine is not easy, but even if the procedures are strict, do your best to follow because it’s not only for your benefit, but the benefit of your family, friends, and even the entire community. Patience and obedience is the key. Let’s help each other to stay safe from COVID-19.