Across the globe, one of the most important and pressing issues right now is how to contain the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that has become the center of our lives. It can be comforting to know that there are things we can do every day in an effort to limit its spread and protect ourselves as well as others from future harm. This begins by understanding the symptoms of the disease so that you know what to look out for. If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and start to develop symptoms, call your healthcare provider for medical advice.
What are the Symptoms?
Reported cases of the Coronavirus began with symptoms ranging from mild to severe. An infected person can begin to see symptoms between two and 14 days after their exposure. This can include the following:
- Shortness of breath
Individuals who have a severe case may see emergency warning signs. Those in this situation should seek out medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs can include but are not limited to:
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
- New confusion or inability to arouse
- Bluish lips or face
What Do I Do if I’ve Been Exposed?
If you believe you have been exposed to the Coronavirus or begin to experience any of the symptoms listed above, there are steps you can take to help contain the disease and keep it from continuing to spread. This does not only help to improve your own health, but it can save others from being exposed as well. This includes the following actions:
- Stay home, avoid public areas, and avoid public transportation.
- Practice social distancing, stay away from others, and limit contact with pets and animals.
- Call ahead before visiting your doctor
- Wear a face mask if you are sick and/or caring for others
- Cover your coughs and sneezes, wash your hands immediately, and dispose of used tissues
- Clean your hands with soap and water often and use hand sanitizer frequently
- Avoid touching your face
- Do not share personal household items such as dishes, drinking glasses, utensils, bedding, etc.
- Clean “high-touch” surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathrooms, etc., every day
- Monitor your symptoms and call a doctor if they begin to worsen