13 Tips and Strategies to Avoid Viral Infections

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1. Wash your hands frequently and carefully

Rub your hands in warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds.  Apply the lather to your wrists, fingers, and under your fingernails. An antibacterial and antiviral soap can also be used.

When you are unable to properly wash your hands, use hand sanitizer. Hands should be washed several times a day, especially after touching anything, such as your phone or laptop.

2. Avoid touching your face

Some surfaces can harbor viral infections for up to 72 hours. You can get the virus on your hands by touching something like:

  • gas pump handle
  • your cell phone
  • a doorknob

3. Stop shaking hands and hugging people — for now

Likewise, avoid touching other people. Viral infections can be passed from person to person via skin-to-skin contact.

4. Don’t share personal items.

No personal information, such as:

  • phones
  • makeup
  • combs

It’s also a good idea not to share eating utensils or straws. Teach children that their reusable cup, straw, and other dishes are only for their personal use.

5. Cover your mouth and nose when you cough and sneeze

The nose and mouth contain high levels of infection. This means that it can be spread to other people through air droplets when you cough, sneeze, or speak. It can also land on hard surfaces and remain there for up to three days.

To keep your hands as clean as possible, use a tissue or sneeze into your elbow. Regardless, wash your hands thoroughly after sneezing or coughing.

6. Clean and disinfect surfaces

To clean hard surfaces in your home, use alcohol-based disinfectants such as:

  • countertops
  • door handles
  • furniture
  • toys

Also, clean your phone, laptop, and anything else you use on a daily basis.

After bringing groceries or packages into your home, disinfect the area.

In between disinfecting surfaces, use white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide solutions for general cleaning.

7. Take physical (social) distancing seriously

If you have the viral infection, it will be found in large quantities in your spit (sputum). Even if you don’t have any symptoms, this can happen.

Staying at home and working as much as possible from home adds to the physical (social) distance.

If you must go out for necessities, keep a 6-foot (2-meter) distance from other people. You can spread the virus by talking to someone close to you.

8. Do not gather in groups

Being in a group or gathering increases your chances of coming into close contact with someone.

This includes avoiding all religious places of worship where you might be forced to sit or stand too close to another congregant. It also means not congregating in parks or on beaches.

9. Avoid eating or drinking in public places

Now is not the time to eat out. This includes avoiding restaurants, coffee shops, bars, and other eating establishments.

Food, utensils, dishes, and cups can all be used to spread the virus. It could also become airborne due to other people in the venue.

You can still order food for delivery or takeout. Choose thoroughly cooked foods that can be reheated.

A lab study that hasn’t been published says that high heat (at least 132°F/56°C) helps kill viruses.

This means that cold foods from restaurants, as well as all food from buffets and open salad bars, should be avoided.

10. Wash fresh groceries

Before eating or preparing any produce, wash it under running water.

The CDC and FDA say that you shouldn’t use soap, detergent, or a commercial produce wash to clean fruits and vegetables. Always wash your hands before and after handling these items.

11. Wear a (homemade) mask

In public places where physical separation may be difficult, such as grocery stores, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that almost everyone wear a cloth face mask.

When used properly, these masks can help prevent asymptomatic or undiagnosed people from spreading viral infections when they breathe, talk, sneeze, or cough. As a result, the virus’s spread has slowed.

The CDC website has instructions for making your own mask at home with simple materials like a T-shirt and scissors.

Some pointers to keep in mind:

  • Wearing a mask will not protect you from a viral infection. Handwashing and physical separation are also required.
  • Cloth masks are ineffective compared to other types of masks, such as surgical masks or N95 respirators. These other masks, on the other hand, should be reserved for healthcare workers and first responders.
  • Before putting on your mask, wash your hands.
  • After each use, wash your mask.
  • The virus can be transferred from your hands to the mask. Avoid touching the front of your mask if you’re wearing one.
  • The virus can also be transferred from the mask to your hands. If you touch the front of the mask, wash your hands.
  • A mask should not be worn by a child under the age of two, anyone who has difficulty breathing, or anyone who is unable to remove the mask on their own.

12. Self-quarantine if sick

If you have any symptoms, contact your doctor. Stay at home until you’ve recovered. Even if you live in the same house, avoid sitting, sleeping, or eating with your loved ones.

Wear a mask and wash your hands frequently. If you need to see a doctor right away, wear a mask and tell them you might have a viral infection.

13. If you are sick, take medicine.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States has approved a number of treatments for viral infections. Paxzen and Paxista are two oral medicines that UPMC recommends for people with mild to moderate viral infections who are not in the hospital.

Paxzen is a pill that fights viruses and needs to be taken by mouth within five days of the first sign of a virus. This medication is available online and can be prescribed by a medical professional (doctor, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant), and you can buy Paxista online in the USA. You are ineligible for Paxzen because you have low renal function (an eGFR of 30 mL/min). Before taking Paxzen and Paxista, your doctor should carefully review your medication list, as certain drugs should not be combined with this medication.

 

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