Let’s talk about COVID-19 – Fear of the Coronavirus and tips for safety and prevention

In case you haven’t noticed, there’s this little thing called COVID-19 going around. Have you heard of it? The Coronavirus has undoubtedly made a significant impact on the world. Every other article online is about this virus, social media has gone over the top about who may or may not be infected, and for public health reasons, things like schools, airports and big events are being shut down and postponed to prevent further spread. The whole world has gone a bit crazy. I’m reading updates about how people have run out of toilet paper and stores running out of supplies. I went to a shopping mall two days ago and couldn’t find hand sanitiser, vitamins or even wet wipes in every store I looked in. Let’s just say that this spread of the Coronavirus has become quite overwhelming.

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A lot of people I’ve spoken to have mentioned how fearful they are of COVID-19 so I’d like to address this. Fear is such an interesting concept, and there are many ways to define it. My dad always says that there are two types of fears – rational and irrational. Rational fear is, for example, if you are standing face to face with a hungry lion and now need to try to survive that situation. Fear at that moment is entirely rational because your life is at stake. All other fears, like phobias, are irrational. I agree with him to some point. I can understand why there is so much fear surrounding this virus. It has spread across the world quite quickly and has quite a high infection rate. The virus has meant airports closing, travellers being quarantined, flights and conferences and international events being cancelled left, right and centre and even schools and universities closing. All of this does make it sound quite threatening.

Fear when it comes to illnesses can often be challenging to manage. People are not quite so fearful about being in a car accident if they have the mindset that they drive carefully and at the right speed, so their odds are much lower. People are also not as fearful about getting flu because there is a vaccination that can help prevent the likelihood of catching it and we all know that if we do get it, we just need to take some medication and spend a few days at home before we are right as rain again. There is a different kind of fear that presents when it comes to getting something like cancer because we have little control over it, and everyone knows how severe it can be.

People are often fearful because they don’t understand or because they can’t control something. I may not be a doctor, or anything close to something related to the health care profession, but both my parents are doctors, so I have a mild understanding. I’m not going to try and explain what COVID-19 is exactly because I’m not a doctor and I don’t want you reading my rudimentary opinion/thoughts as facts. Still, I am going to say that if you want to know more about it, do your research carefully. Use reliable medical websites over news articles because we all know that the news and social media love nothing more than inflation and drama. At the moment, there is no vaccination for the Coronavirus, which I can understand is quite a scary thought, especially because it is quite infectious. However, this doesn’t have to mean mass panic. Just because there is no vaccine, doesn’t mean there aren’t other things you can do for your own health-safety and to help prevent the spread. For those looking for tips of what to do to stay as safe as possible with a virus like this, here you go!

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Don’t panic

Panic is never the answer to anything. Ever! As much as drama queens, news sites and zombie apocalypse movies all say ‘panic’, I promise you it isn’t going to help anything. The trick to dealing with any stressful or problematic situation is to remain calm because you can’t deal with it rationally when you’re freaking out. Trust me – I’m the most anxious person I know, and even I know that you can’t deal with a situation properly when panic is in control. Try to avoid listening to all the fake news out there about COVID-19. There are some simple things to do to help prevent the spread, and if you do get it (* touch wood that you don’t because no one likes getting sick), you can go to a hospital and get treated. The truth is that the virus is going to keep spreading because that is what a virus does – the only way for us to manage it is by first and foremost remaining calm so we can deal with it rationally.

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Wash your hands

Washing your hands should be a standard practise after certain activities, but when you are trying to prevent the spread of a virus and stay healthy, it becomes something that you can do every time you think about it. Keeping your hands clean by washing them regularly can help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses. If you’re sick, have been in contact with someone ill or simply after being out and touching surfaces, just pop into the bathroom and give your hands a scrub. Or, if you can’t wash your hands, at least use some hand sanitiser. This may not sound like it is going to do much, but washing your hands regularly is an excellent start to keeping yourself healthy and preventing further spread.

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Social Distancing 

There is a virus on the loose. So maybe it’s a good idea to start practising some social distancing. No, I don’t mean distance yourself from all your friends and family and become a recluse. What I mean is keeping a physical distance from people, even ones that you know and especially ones you don’t know. Avoid hugging people, kissing cheeks, shaking hands because this is a good way for a virus to spread. It doesn’t mean you can’t touch someone you care about, nor does it mean that doing this social distancing will completely protect you from the Coronavirus. However, by not touching people unnecessarily, it can help avoid the spread of the virus and decrease the chances of you getting it.

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Avoid crowded spaces

COVID-19 is a respiratory virus. That means it is spread through respiratory droplets in people’s breath when they sneeze or cough. It can get on people’s hands when they cover their mouths to cough, and it is quite infectious. So, with that in mind, you might want to avoid crowded or very populated spaces. Why? Because there are so many people in those spaces breathing, coughing and sneezing, and for all you know, one of them might be infected. You don’t have to start doing all your shopping online and not go into work. However, if you have a concert or sports match coming up, or a big party or some other event where you know you going to be in close proximity with a massive number of people, you might want to think about cancelling that. Think about it as if you are in an elevator – people in close proximity all breathing in each other’s air. If you are going to be in a situation where you are that close to lots of people, the chances of disease spreading are higher, so avoiding those situations will decrease the chances of infection.

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Faces, tissues and coughing/sneezing

When people cough or sneeze, they tend to either cover their mouth with their hand or a tissue. The respiratory droplets carrying the virus are now on their hand or tissue. People may not have instant access to a sanatory product to clean their hands. So, avoid touching anyone else’s tissues and throw your own tissues away as soon as you’ve used them. Also, avoid touching your face unnecessarily unless you washed your hands directly before. You may have touched something or shook someone’s hand are now spreading whatever was there (it’s usually just loads of germs, but it could be a virus) to your face. So, especially during this time, try to think and act as hygienically as possible.

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Stay home if you’re sick 

If you happen to be sick, most people tend to stay home. Why? It’s not just so that you get some time to sleep it off, take your medicine and get better. It is also to stop you from unintentionally spreading what you have to other people. I know that some people valiantly go to work no matter how sick they are, and good for you for having that kind of dedication, but maybe now is the time to finally give yourself that sick leave you’ve been missing for however many years. If you are sick, no matter what you have, rather stay home until you are feeling better. That gives you all the time you need for your body to battle the disease and for you to rest up and feel better. It also keeps the nerves of everyone else at bay and helps prevent the spread of sickness.

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Keep your distance from sick people

Much like how you stay at home when you are sick to prevent giving other people what you have, keeping your distance from sick people is a good idea to stop whatever the illness is from spreading. Of course, it is not the person’s fault that they are sick, so you don’t have to treat them like a bomb that is ready to go off. However, while the Coronavirus threat is around, keeping your distance will help ensure that you don’t inadvertently catch whatever they have. It is just safety to make sure the spread of diseases, particularly this one, is kept to a minimum.

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Stay healthy 

Duh! This one is obvious, right? As obvious as it may seem, I’m still going to mention it. While we can’t necessarily help getting a virus (COVID-19 in particular), that doesn’t mean we can’t do everything within our power to stay healthy. Everything I’ve mentioned above is a great way to try prevent getting the virus or spreading it, but there are also some things you can do for yourself to keep your immune system in top shape. Eat healthily and try to exercise regularly. Don’t forget about taking vitamins (viral choice is an excellent anti-viral to take) and just try to keep you and your space as clean and hygienic as possible. It may not sound like much, but all of these things added together can do so much in helping you stay healthy and avoiding more people getting sick.

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And so there you have it! Personally, I’m not scared of the Coronavirus itself because I have a good idea of what it is, but I also know that I can be treated if I get it. However, I am scared of what this virus is going to continue to impact. SO many things have been cancelled and shut down for public health safety, and we don’t know what else is going to be affected as the spread grows. This virus is out of our control at the moment, but things like staying healthy and avoiding unnecessary contact with the virus or situations where you could contract it is in our control. Let’s try to stay as safe as possible, without dissolving into a panic. A good idea might just be to stock up on a few things in case everyone else goes into zombie apocalypse mode, or the government decides we can’t leave our houses. Thank you all so much for reading, and please stay healthy everyone!

Lots of Love

Blondey on a Mission xxx

Author: blondeyonamission

Hey everyone! I'm a lifestyle and travel blogger from South Africa and about to relocate to the UK for university. My blog is all about stories, tips and advice with topics ranging from university, organisation, friends, books, travel and more. Please check it out and I hope you enjoy xxx

4 thoughts

  1. Thank you for this information I totally agree fearing something that is out of your control leads to be anxious and deprives you to think rationally. All the steps you mentioned are right and that is all that you can do. I agree that washing hands regularly is a good health habit.

    Liked by 1 person

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