How do we protect ourselves at home during coronavirus, and what if someone has been exposed? 4 questions answered

1

Editor’s notice: As coronavirus spreads by the nation, states have closed faculties and nonessential companies and prohibited group gatherings. This leaves most of us at dwelling, however many people dwell in shut quarters with different individuals. We requested public well being specialists from the UNLV School of Public Health how individuals can shield themselves from being contaminated with the brand new coronavirus in these conditions.

1. How will we shield ourselves from one another?

The thought behind social distancing is to create bodily separation that reduces every particular person’s threat of an infection. While staying dwelling with a view to restrict contact with others is simple, your contact isn’t actually restricted until you reside alone. While you may’t keep away from your loved ones members altogether, you’ll have to take into consideration your dwelling state of affairs and take reasonable steps which are applicable for you and your loved ones.

If there may be somebody with a compromised immune system in your house, the opposite members of the family ought to act as if they’re a threat of an infection to that particular person. They ought to restrict direct contact with the compromised particular person as a lot as doable and wash their arms earlier than any contact, simply as a well being care employee would. Family members with compromised immune programs must also keep a six-foot separation from different member of the family when doable. They ought to keep dwelling and permit different members of the family to run errands similar to choosing up meals or prescriptions for them.

During these unsure and stressful instances, it’s important that we keep our emotional interactions with others. You can nonetheless use textual content messages, telephone calls or video chat to be a part of every others’ lives. However, it is not the time for sleepovers, travel to visit relatives or friends, playdates, parties or small group gatherings. It can be not the time to go to older members of the family or associates at excessive threat of illness.

The proper technique to wash your arms.

2. What if somebody in my family has been uncovered?

Just as a result of an individual has been uncovered doesn’t imply that they may get sick. The objective of self-quarantine is to maintain uncovered individuals away from nicely individuals in order that in the event that they do turn out to be sick, they don’t unfold their sickness.

Before faculties and companies closed, an individual beneath self-quarantine stayed dwelling whereas the remainder of the household went about their regular lives. As everyone seems to be now staying at dwelling, you is perhaps pressured to spend extra time in shut contact with somebody who has been uncovered to a recognized case of coronavirus.

Infected individuals may be able to spread the virus before the symptoms begin, however specialists don’t but understand how seemingly they’re to contaminate others and once they turn out to be infectious. This is why it’s important that an uncovered particular person limits contact with others of their family. While different members of the family don’t have to do something specifically, individuals beneath self-quarantine ought to:

• Practice social distancing with different family members, which suggests staying at the very least six ft away. If doable, keep in a separate room.

• Practice good hygiene and wash their hands usually.

• Avoid sharing home items or consuming utensils.

Clean high-touch surfaces, together with your phone, sport controllers, remotes, mild switches, taps and bathroom handles, usually. But be conscious of utilizing sturdy chemical substances in enclosed areas, as improperly used chemical substances could cause eye or throat irritation or breathing problems.

If the particular person doesn’t develop the illness inside 14 days of publicity, the chance has handed and the particular person not must self-quarantine.

3. One of us is sick. What do I do now?

If it’s a must to handle a sick member of the family, you need to additionally shield your self. There are further issues that each of you are able to do to protect your health:

• Isolate the sick particular person from different individuals within the family in a separate room if doable.

• Have solely a single member of the family take care of that particular person, minimizing the chance to different members of the family.

• In addition to everybody working towards common hand-washing, the caregiver ought to wash their arms after any direct contact with the sick particular person.

• The sick particular person ought to cowl their mouth and nostril with a tissue once they cough or sneeze, then discard it.

• Don’t share home items or consuming utensils.

• If the climate permits, open home windows to extend air flow.

You ought to proceed these practices till the particular person is not infectious. Because testing is troublesome to acquire, you may cease these steps 72 hours after signs have resolved and at the very least seven days have handed since symptoms first appeared.

4. What if I can’t do these items?

Many of those actions, similar to hand-washing and cleansing, may be executed by anybody, even when a number of individuals are dwelling in a small family. While placing a sick relative in a separate room is right, it might not be an possibility in a small house. In that case, the sick particular person ought to keep at the very least six ft away from everybody else. The sick particular person ought to put on a masks if they’ve one to restrict the unfold of their an infection. If you don’t have a masks, a bandana or scarf could present some safety in opposition to spreading illness to different members of the family as nicely.

[Get facts about coronavirus and the latest research. Sign up for our newsletter.]