The coronavirus has officially been circulating in the U.S. The number of those infected and the fatalities rise each day, although it is a fact that those who are older and those with pre-existing health conditions are the ones at higher risk. Even if you’re someone who’s younger or someone without pre-existing health conditions, it’s still imperative that you remain informed and remain healthy as to not spread the virus to others. The CDC states that, “while information so far suggests that most COVID-19 illness is mild, a report out of China suggests serious illness occurs in 16% of cases. Older people and people with certain underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease and diabetes, for example, seem to be at greater risk of serious illness.” (CDC, 2020). Because of this, the Ear, Nose and Throat Institute wants everyone to remain safe from harm, so we’ve created a list of what to do and what not to do during this time.
First, before we get to that list, we’d like to highlight what exactly the ENT Institute is doing to help prevent patients and staff from contracting the coronavirus.
We are implementing consistent spraying of GuardiENT (hypochlorous) throughout our offices. Hypochlorous is a natural and organic disinfectant that has potential to kill viruses and bacteria. It’s safe for human consumption because it’s all-natural, non-toxic, and can actually be found in the human body. What is hypochlorous exactly? Also known as HOCI (the chemical makeup), is actually inside every human body as we speak. Your white blood cells produce it when an infection takes place. Think of it as helping your white blood cells to prevent contracting the virus. Naturally, we will be spraying it in the offices to disinfect, but we’ve produced GuardiENT for purchase. Please note that GuardiENT hypochlorous is not a cure-all and not guaranteed to kill the coronavirus, but as a natural disinfectant, it has the potential.
What not to do
It’s easy to see the infection numbers and panic, but the best thing anyone can do is take a step back, observe the details, and make preparations in the meantime.
Stop buying face masks
You might be seeing on the news that face masks are sold out everywhere. That it’s impossible to get some. It might stir some panic in you, making you realize that your mouth and nostrils are out in the open. Well, the good and bad news is that face masks don’t actually help. That’s right – they actually could cause further contamination if not properly used, removed, and disposed of. Not to mention that people with masks are more likely to touch their faces to adjust the mask. Also, healthcare professionals, like surgeons, need those masks for procedures. If we want our healthcare officials to continue taking care of us, we should let them have the masks. TIME says it like this: “The science, according to the CDC, says that surgical masks won’t stop the wearer from inhaling small airborne particles, which can cause infection. Nor do these masks form a snug seal around the face. The CDC recommends surgical masks only for people who already show symptoms of coronavirus and must go outside, since wearing a mask can help prevent spreading the virus by protecting others nearby when you cough or sneeze. The agency also recommends these masks for caregivers of people infected with the virus.” (Oaklander, 2020).
If you’re sick, stop going out in public
This one should be obvious, yet the coronavirus continues to spread. If you feel feverish and other flu-like symptoms, seek out a healthcare professional and get their advice. In general though, staying home and self-quarantining will prevent further contamination. It’s possible in the near future that schools will have to transition to online schooling and certain jobs will revert to a work-from-home format for a period. WebMD also says, “DON’T travel if you have a fever. If you get sick on flight, tell crew immediately. When you get home, contact a health professional.” (Nazario, 2020). Alternatively, if you know someone who’s sick, try to avoid spending time with them for a little while.
With any epidemic like this, it’s natural to panic, but if the CDC and the World Health Organization hasn’t shut things down just yet, then there’s a chance for containment before it gets really bad. Also, panic leads to unnecessary conflict and issues where it’s unwarranted. It’s wise to stock up on needed food items like canned food, dry goods, and water bottles, but thinking the world is going to end won’t help the situation.
Stop touching your face
Seriously, stop it. Touching your face shouldn’t be that common – with or without a coronavirus. When you touch a surface and then touch your nose or mouth unwittingly, you’re increasing the chances of contracting viruses, including corona and the flu. When you feel the urge to scratch an itch, just fight through it. Trust us.
What to do
Now that we’re through what not to do, let’s talk about the things you should be doing to prevent infection in you and your loved ones. As we said before, don’t panic.
Wash your hands
This is something you should do regardless of the coronavirus, but maybe this will help create better habits. Washing your hands for 20 seconds or more before eating, before touching your face, and right when you get home are great ways to prevent the virus. Make sure you’re also not drying your hands out, as dried hands can make it easier to catch something. Use hand lotion to moisturize.
Avoid crowded places
Easier said than done, right? We all frequent crowded places all the time – like church, the mall, movie theaters, work, the subway, etc. If you’re older or have a pre-existing health condition, stay home as much as possible.
Build up supplies
Just the necessities – water, dry goods, canned foods, or meats that you can keep in the freezer. Also, maybe some board games to keep the family from going insane. Worst case scenario: we all have to spend some extra time in our houses (doesn’t sound so bad). Best case scenario: we just have a bunch of extra food and supplies at the house for future use.
Get medical help if you’re sick
If you’re feeling a fever come on or other flu/cold symptoms, call your primary doctor for further instruction. You may need to get tested for the coronavirus, and depending on the results, stay quarantined at home for a time. It just ensures that you’re safe and that the general public is safe. Consider others while you’re seeking medical help – meaning don’t go into a waiting room and sit with everyone else. Make the call first before showing up to a facility.
Cough/sneeze into your elbow or tissue
No one wants your germs! Would you want someone to sneeze or cough on you? Probably not. So out of respect for others, please sneeze into the underside of your elbow or a tissue and dispose of it immediately (Note: don’t dispose of your elbow. Just the tissue. Thanks).
Disinfect your space
Everything you touch has germs on and around it – including your phone (which you touch all day), your doorknobs (which you touch all day), your laptop (which you touch all day), your steering wheel (which you touch all day). Get the picture? Buy some disinfectant wipes and sprays and keep your workspace and living space germ-free. To keep your skin and nose germ-free, you can order GuardiENT, our very own in-house solution of hypochlorous.
That’s our list for now, but if you’d like to pre-order a few bottles of GuardiENT, call 770-740-1860. If you’re feeling flu symptoms, reach out to your primary care doctor and see what they advise. The Ear, Nose and Throat Institute cares about your health and safety, so please take care of yourself and your loved ones.
More on the coronavirus
How to Survive - Episode 01: Coronavirus Update
Updates on the virus and how the ENT Institute is keeping its patients safe during the outbreak.
Should I Worry About the Coronavirus?
Having the right information is of the utmost importance so that you’re completely updated and aware of what’s happening next. Like previous outbreaks, there’s good news and bad news, so be aware of both so you can remain grounded in reality and be prepared. Read More
Coronavirus: What You Need to Know
You’ve heard that a new virus, known as the coronavirus, started in China and spread to thousands of people – including China and the U.S. – causing thousands of deaths. It’s natural to be concerned about a virus like this, as it brings about uncertainty and fear. The real question here is: “How dangerous is coronavirus?” Read More
CDC. (2020, March 03). Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Situation Summary [Medical Website] Retrieved on March 04, 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/summary.html
Oaklander, M. (2020, March 04). Health Experts Are Telling Healthy People Not to Wear Face Masks for Coronavirus. So Why Are So Many Doing It? [News article] Retrieved on March 04, 2020 from https://time.com/5794729/coronavirus-face-masks/
Nazario, Brunilda, MD. (2020, February 28). Preparing for Coronavirus: Dos and Don’ts [Health website] Retrieved on March 04 from https://www.webmd.com/lung/news/20200228/preparing-for-coronavirus-dos-and-donts