If you have not heard anything yet about Covid-19, also called coronavirus, you have probably been saved a great deal of stress, worry, and hyper-excitation.
In this case, ignorance is not bliss, so do educate yourself about this virus, simple common health-building, and infection-preventative measures. This notice will provide you with some of that information. Please recognize that this is not the most authoritative information available.
I intend to be supportive and supply basic information, and to encourage you to be calm and rational as you think about this virus and the ominous picture being painted by the media. It is true that many of us neither fully understand the modes of transmission, nor the health impact that it may hold for any of us in particular.
It is true with any sort of infection that the very youngest and the very oldest members of our population are likely to be more vulnerable. Those with any sort of immune system compromise and chronic or debilitating health conditions also are likely to be more vulnerable. If you are not in those categories, you might consider how you can contribute to your family and community by assisting or running errands or shopping for loved ones with less fortunate health status.
Of course, the first principle in any emergent situation is to assess your surroundings, adopt safety first principles, protect yourself, and protect all others that you possibly can minister to. I consider this to be the strategizing portion of my action plan, and hopefully, you will be inspired to adopt this approach in your action plan.
Concerning the “Do Not Catastrophize” principle, this is very much a mindset that will be personal for each individual. Part of your emergency plan may be to consider one or more worst-case scenarios and some solutions or action steps for those potentials, and that is wise to pursue.
The difficult part for some people is to emotionally separate from the tendency to obsess over the worst-case scenario and imagining it to be looming 6 inches behind you. Taking moments to divert your attention, relax, enjoy some creative activities in your home, connect with friends and family by telephone or email can be beneficial and provide some peace of mind.
If you are glued to a newsfeed, no matter what the type of media, your mind will be inundated with worry, worst-case scenarios becoming more and more “real”, and you will be pulled into the Catastrophizing mindset. Once you are in that negative loop, your creativity, problem-solving and sense of hope could be significantly diminished.
Far from advising you to avoid all media reporting about the status of Covid-19, I am advising that you not allow that input to overwhelm your mind and your life. Many activities are being canceled or postponed. Simply accepting that change by trying to make the best of the situation at hand is much better for your emotional and physical health. I ascribe to the philosophy of looking for the silver lining.
If you or your family are staying home more and feeling sequestered, attempt to drop that stigma and use the time to enrich your relationships, your communications, or devote more time to simple projects in the home, office, or workshop that you seem to put at the bottom of your to-do list.
Obviously, following simple guidelines (some of which are linked to this notice) is a common sense and protective approach. These procedures should give you increased peace of mind as well. Frequent handwashing, cleaning and sanitizing common-use surfaces, and minimizing unnecessary exposure to crowds or proactive measures. Thinking more positively about them instead of grudgingly going through the motions will help your psyche.
I encourage you to pull out your copy of YOUR BODY CAN TALK, second edition and to reread chapter 6, Energizing the Immune System. An additional resource for you is my immune system newsletter that was published in February 2019 and is posted on my website, YourBodyCanTalk.com.
Below is the text that a very close friend of many years sent to me for a commonsense approach to basic information and principles to follow. Consider this to be part of your strategy.
The new Coronavirus may not show signs of infection for many days. How can one know if he/she is infected? By the time they have a fever and/or cough and go to the hospital, the lung is usually 50% Fibrosis and it's too late.
Taiwan experts provide a simple self-check that we can do every morning. Take a deep breath and hold your breath for more than 10 seconds. If you complete it successfully without coughing, without discomfort, stiffness or tightness, etc., it proves there is no Fibrosis in the lungs, basically indicates no infection. In a critical time, please self-check every morning in an environment with clean air.
Serious excellent advice by Japanese doctors treating COVID-19 cases: Everyone should ensure your mouth & throat are moist, never dry. Take a few sips of water every 15 minutes at least. Why? Even if the virus gets into your mouth, drinking water or other liquids will wash them down through your throat and into the stomach. Once there, your stomach acid will kill all viruses. If you don't drink enough water more regularly, the virus can enter your windpipe and into the lungs. That's very dangerous. Please send and share this with family and friends.
Strategize - Do Not Catastrophize
If you have a runny nose and sputum (phlegm), you have a common cold.
Coronavirus pneumonia is a dry cough with no runny nose.
This new virus is not heat-resistant and will be killed by a temperature of just 80 degrees F. It hates the Sun.
If someone sneezes with it, it takes about 10 feet before it drops to the ground and is no longer airborne.
If it drops on a metal surface it will live for at least 12 hours - so if you come into contact with any metal surface WASH YOUR HANDS as soon as you can with a bacterial soap.
On fabric, it can survive for 6-12 hours. Normal laundry detergent will kill it.
Drinking warm water is effective for all viruses. Try not to drink liquids with ice.
Wash your hands frequently as the virus can only live on your hands for 5-10 minutes. A lot can happen during that time: you can rub your eyes, pick your nose unwittingly and so on.
You should also gargle as prevention. A simple solution of salt in warm water will suffice.
Can't Emphasis This Enough: DRINK PLENTY OF WATER!
It will first infect the throat, so you may have a sore throat lasting 3-4 days.
The virus then blends into a nasal fluid that enters the trachea and then the lungs, causing pneumonia. This takes about 5-6 days further.
With pneumonia comes high fever and difficulty in breathing.
The nasal congestion is not like the normal kind. You may experience the sensation of drowning. If you do, it is imperative you then seek immediate attention.