Hygiene in the event of a pandemic is your best arsenal. Good hygiene is crucial to your overall health and not just during a viral outbreak. In the case of Novel Coronavirus, maintenance of hygiene seems to be the sole way of preventing it. Here is a list of the best hygiene practices to fight Coronavirus infection.
Handwashing; One of the best hygiene practices to fight Coronavirus
The most effective way of preventing the entry of the virus is hand washing.
Being a respiratory illness in nature, Coronavirus generally spreads through virus-laden air droplets from coughing and sneezing. In case the infected doesn't use a tissue while coughing and sneezing and discards it after use, the virus can end up on surfaces. If a person comes in contact with the contaminated surface, then the virus can transfer into them.
The virus may also transfer itself from hands to the body if your hands come in contact with your eyes, mouth, and nose.
Hence, the best way to stay safe from the virus is by cleansing your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
However, it is important to note that soap does kill the virus, but not in the way you think. The virus has a sticky hydrophilic layer- which means it sticks to surfaces, like hands. The soap merely acts as a removing agent, dissolves it in water and kills it.
Slow the spread of the infection
After thorough research, the WHO has stated that symptoms of novel COVID-19 sometimes doesn't show on a carrier of the virus for several days. During this period, the carrier can spread it to others, without showing any of the obvious symptoms.
Therefore, to be on the safer side, it is best advised to limit physical contact with people. No handshakes, no hugs.
Do not share cups, glasses, dishes or cutlery, since Coronavirus is widely known to stick on surfaces.
To carry out effective social distancing, the following steps must be followed:
If you have recently traveled abroad and returned, please take a coronavirus test. Some airports have availed screening while some have not. It is your responsibility to take a test and not jeopardize others' lives.
Hand sanitizer is your best friend.
If soap and water are not available, the best reliable option is a hand sanitizer. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are very effective at terminating viruses. However, make sure that the sanitizer contains 60-90% alcohol for it to be substantially effective.
If your hands are visibly dirty, clean it with soap and water as soon as possible.
Although there have been no reports of contracting the virus through food or food packaging, experts advise us to maintain basic food hygiene.
- Wash your produce
Although it's unknown for how long the virus can survive on the surface of food, since it's a virus that stubbornly sticks on surfaces, it is wise to wash your fresh produce before cooking or raw consumption.
- Keep your kitchen clean
Make sure you cleanse your kitchen surfaces like the slab, stove, oven, cabinets, utensils, and holders with a powerful disinfectant. Especially when someone's been sneezing or coughing within the household.
- Cook food at a proper temperature
Virologist experts state that the virus is sensitive to cooking - that is heat. Therefore, not only to avoid the virus but also the avoid other foodborne illnesses, it is wise to cook food at a proper temperature.
Infection control plans for workplaces, homes and other public utilities
In facilities that invite crowds constantly, cleaning surfaces of the facility using a disinfectant serves as an adequate and one of the best hygiene practices to fight Coronavirus. And while carrying out such procedures, it is best advised to wear protective clothing, such as masks, eye protection, gloves, etc if required.
Provide hand sanitation facilities and encourage their use; carry out this hygiene practice to reduce the risk of coronavirus. A box of tissues must also be provided to everyone in a workplace or they must be encouraged to bring their tissues. As anyone could transfer the virus onto the surface of those articles, magazines, and papers from common waiting areas should be removed.
Lastly, yet most importantly, ventilation systems must be checked. It is however suggested to avoid air-conditioned environments as air droplets carrying the virus can easily spread in a closed air-conditioned space. Open spaces with good ventilation are less likely to carry the virus in the air.
There are other ways in which you can prepare for this global pandemic. Read more on our blog.