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Coronavirus has already killed more than 1,000 people and infected at least 45,000 worldwide till now, and the number continues to grow. There are currently no vaccines available to help protect against infection. However, the WHO and CDC provide the public with 10 basic protective measures against the new coronavirus. Read on and check out how to protect yourself!
According to WHO, handwashing can help prevent illness quite effectively. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating and preparing food, after using the bathroom, after wiping your nose, and after coming in contact with someone who has a cold.
If soap and water are not readily available, the CDC suggests that an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be used instead. But remember if your hands are visibly dirty, you have to wash them with soap and water.
Do NOT touch your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Hands touch many surfaces that can be contaminated with the virus. As the WHO panel of experts said, if you touch your eyes, nose or mouth with your contaminated hands, you can transfer the virus from the surface to yourself.
The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to the virus, as well as the sick. Avoid close contact with people with a cold, and stay home if you're feeling sick yourself. The distance should be at least 1 meter (3 feet) on the authority of the WHO.
The CDC also recommends covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when sneezing and coughing or sneeze and cough into your sleeve. Don't forget to wash your hands carefully afterward.
Beyond that, the CDC advises cleaning frequently used objects and surfaces (such as doorknobs) with a virus-killing disinfectant. A regular household cleaning spray or wipe can also be used as a substitute.
As long as it's not freezing, open your windows for at least 30 minutes a day to maintain good indoor ventilation, which can reduce the risk of disease transmission, as claimed by the CDC.
Check with your doctor if you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, and tell him or her about any recent travels, as stated by the WHO and CDC. A professional diagnosis can help you get appropriate treatment, whether you get infected or not.
In addition to the above, WHO recommends that if you're visiting live markets in areas that have recently had novel coronavirus cases, avoid contact with live animals and surfaces they may have touched. And eat raw food as less as possible.
Last but not least, both the WHO and CDC suggest getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, drinking plenty of liquids, and exercising if you are able can be really helpful. These steps will strengthen your immune system and enable you to fight off infections easier.
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