Coronavirus infection

What is Coronavirus?

Coronavirus is a kind of common virus which causes an infection in your nose, sinuses, or upper throat. Most coronaviruses aren’t dangerous.

But recently in 2020, after a December 2019 outbreak in China, a new type of Coronavirus is identified by World Health Organization, which can be fatal. The organization named the disease it causes COVID-19.

The outbreak was quickly moved from China around the world. It spreads person-to-person contact as other Coronavirus do.

Symptoms can show up anywhere from 2 to 14 days after exposure. Early on, they’re a lot like the common cold.

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Infections can range from mild to serious. If it leads to pneumonia, respiratory failure or septic shock the virus can turn deadly. Those most at risk of death are the elderly and people with weakened immune systems.

What is novel coronavirus?

Novel coronavirus (CoV) is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans. The “novel” coronavirus, now called 2019-nCoV, had not previously detected before the outbreak was reported in Wuhan, China in December 2019.

How dangerous is Novel Coronavirus?

As with other respiratory illnesses, infection with 2019-nCoV can cause mild symptoms including a runny nose, sore throat, cough, and fever.  It can be more severe for some persons and can lead to pneumonia or breathing difficulties.  More rarely, the disease can be fatal. Older people and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as, diabetes and heart disease) appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill with the virus.

How does Virus spread?

The new coronavirus is a respiratory virus which spreads primarily through contact with an infected person through respiratory droplets generated when a person, for example, coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose. It is important that everyone practice good respiratory hygiene. For example, sneeze or cough into a flexed elbow, or use a tissue and discard it immediately into a closed bin.  It is also very important for people to wash their hands regularly with either alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

What to Do About?

There is no vaccine for coronavirus. To help prevent a coronavirus infection, try avoiding the common cold:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water or with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Keep your hands and fingers away from your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are infected.

You treat a coronavirus infection the same way you treat a cold:

  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Drink fluids.
  • Take over-the-counter medicine for a sore throat and fever. But don’t give aspirin to children or teens younger than 19; use ibuprofen or acetaminophen instead.

Humidifier or steamy shower can also help ease a sore and scratchy throat.

Other Precautionary measures

  1. If you get sick, treat your symptoms and contact a doctor if they get worse or don’t go away. Whenever you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing it’s important to seek medical attention promptly as this may be due to a respiratory infection or other serious condition.

2. Respiratory symptoms with fever can have a range of causes, and depending on your personal travel history and circumstances, 2019-nCoV could be one of them.

3. If mild respiratory symptoms and no travel history to or within China, carefully practice basic respiratory and hand hygiene and stay home until you are recovered, if possible.

4. Avoid consumption of raw or undercooked animal products,

Handle raw meat, milk or animal organs with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practices.

5. Wearing a medical mask can help limit the spread of some respiratory disease. However, using a mask alone is not guaranteed to stop infections and should be combined with other prevention measures including hand and respiratory hygiene and avoiding close contact – at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and other people.

Is there any antibiotics effective in treating Navel Coronavirus?

No, antibiotics do not work against viruses, they only work on bacterial infections. The novel coronavirus is a virus and, therefore, antibiotics should not be used as a means of prevention or treatment. 

Is there any Specific medicine to prevent 2019-NCoV?

There is no specific medicine recommended till now to prevent or treat the novel coronavirus. However, those infected with 2019-nCoV should receive appropriate care to relieve and treat symptoms, and those with severe illness should receive optimized supportive care.

Some specific treatments are under investigation and will be tested through clinical trials.  WHO is helping to coordinate efforts to develop medicines to treat nCoV with a range of partners.

If you want to protect yourself from getting infected with the new coronavirus, one should maintain basic hand and respiratory hygiene, and safe food practices and avoiding close contact, when possible, with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.The following measures are not specifically recommended as 2019-nCoV remedies as they are not effective to protect yourself and can be even harmful:

  • Taking vitamin C
  • Smoking
  • Drinking tradition herbal teas
  • Wearing multiple masks to maximize protection
  • Taking self-medication such as antibiotics  

In any case, if you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing seek medical care early to reduce the risk of developing a more severe infection and be sure to share your recent travel history with your health care provider.

Stay safe, Live happy….

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