Everyone around us is covered with face masks. We can barely see the faces or touch people around us. We could not see the faces of our loved ones. In India, we are using Namaste as a weapon so that, we cannot touch while greeting people. It helps us keep a safe distance from real or imagined threat.
However, amid coronavirus fear, lot of misconceptions and rumors also float around. Most of us are unable to differentiate between coronavirus and common flu. Although most of the symptoms of coronavirus are same as common flu’s, but unlike common flue, coronavirus’s symptoms may soon progress into potentially life-threatening stage.
Coronavirus is a new kind of virus. It belongs to the family of viruses. New addition to family is Novel Coronavirus.
The vaccination and medicine are not available yet in any part of the world. Doctors aretrying their best to find a solution. In the meantime, WHO has declared coronavirus as pandemic. In response, schools, colleges, cinema halls, shopping malls in the national capital will remain closed till 31st of March, 2020.
Symptoms of Coronavirus are:
- Common cold symptoms
- Shortness of breath
- Body aches and fatigue
Padma Awardee Dr. M. Wali, who is associated with the Cardiovascular Services at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, says ‘Normal flu produces an illness while this coronavirus produces dry pneumonia. Throat gets dry, and then if this virus gets mixed up with nasal secretions then the same trickles down and causes a dry pneumonia.
Three major Points we all need to keep in mind is:
- Hand hygiene
- Cough etiquettes
- Social distancing
Dr Samrat Shah, MD-Internal Medicine, Bhatia Hospital Mumbai says, the new coronavirus has created havoc all over the world. But we should always remember some basic facts. The virus is similar to flu (common cold and cough). Mortality and morbidity caused by the latest virus is around 3-5 per cent. Moreover, patients who have comorbid factors – elderly with diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, on immunosuppressants, cancer patients, are more likely to die from this virus.
He suggests some basic steps which can prevent coronavirus/any respiratory viral infection:
- Wash hands regularly
- Maintain a distance of approximately 3 feet from the person affected
- Cover your mouth and nose before sneezing and coughing and dispose off the tissues
- Drink plenty of liquids if you run temperature
- Seek medical help if unwell
No empirical antibiotics to be used until and unless prescribed by your doctor