As temperatures fall, people are spending more time indoors. That heightens the risk of the coronavirus spreading, but there are some simple steps you can take to help protect yourself and everyone around you.
Avoid crowds and keep some distance: Avoid the 3 C's – closed, crowded and close contact. This gets harder as the seasons change and more activities move indoors.The risks of contracting COVID-19 increase in inadequately ventilated spaces where people spend long periods together in close proximity.
Wear a face mask: Face masks can reduce the virus's spread by stopping droplets people breathe out and filtering some of what they breathe in. They are especially important in crowded and poorly ventilated areas.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth: Your hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can then transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can infect you.
Wash your hands: Simply washing your hands can reduce the spread of viruses. Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands for at least 20 seconds with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. This eliminates germs, including viruses.
Keep surfaces clean: Clean and disinfect surfaces in your home frequently, especially those people touch regularly, such as door handles, faucets and phone screens.
Recognise the symptoms: Being able to recognise the symptoms of COVID-19 is important. Common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, dry cough and fatigue. Other symptoms that may affect some patients include loss of taste or smell, aches and pains, headache, sore throat, nasal congestion, red eyes, diarrhoea or skin rash.
Take care of your mental health: During the stress and upheaval of the pandemic, do not forget to take care of your mental health and well-being.Connecting with friends, loved ones and your community via social media, phone, video or text can help reduce feelings of social isolation. Eating well, exercising daily and getting enough sleep are important for health and coping.