Do you have any advice to the readers regarding the coronavirus?
There is a world of misinformation spiralling around the Internet which people are believing, and the real information isn't reaching them. As a medical student, I think I have a slightly better understanding about this than some, so I would request everyone to listen to the authorities. People are getting beaten up for not staying home, but that is for their own well-being. We have to maintain quarantine since we don't want the disease to spread like Italy or the US. They are developed countries, but they're still going through a really rough time. As a developing country, we are sure to be in an even worse condition. So, we must stay home and maintain distance, even between family members, to stop the spread. If someone does get it, they can contact emergency services. To get more information, people can go to WHO's website. We should help in our own way wherever we are. We have a responsibility to us and everyone around us. We have to be mentally strong to battle this since we have to keep our immune systems in check, and if we're struggling mentally, it might affect our immunity.
How are you spending time in quarantine?
This is the first time I've been in a situation like this. Although it is advised to not panic, I'm a little scared since I live with my father, who is elderly, my mother, who is diabetic, and my child, who is only eight. I've always maintained a disciplined life, and I'm trying to do the same now, like exercising and eating healthy, although some things are bound to change. I still wake up early and do facial yoga. Then I drink some fluids to cleanse my body, like lemon water, basil seeds mixed with water and blended aloe vera and turmeric. A few hours later, I do some home workouts. After my daughter is awake, I'm with her when she is doing her school work. Following that, we tend to watch movies or listen to music. In the afternoon, we go to the rooftop where I jog. I'm also trying to maintain a diary now to record my days. I'm reading books as well. The new things that we're all following are washing hands regularly and maintaining physical distance because we don't know who might be a coronavirus vector without exhibiting symptoms. We've also told our household helpers and chauffeur to not come during quarantine. Another thing that I've done is forbid any family member to visit now. This may seem extremely rude in our society's perspective, but desperate times call for desperate measures. I've also uploaded a video on how to properly wash our hands on social media.
Can you talk about the disinfectant you have been promoting?
I have a friend, Amin, Dr Md. Nuhu, who is an assistant scientist at icddr,b. He told me a few years ago that according to a study conducted by icddr,b, if we mix four teaspoons of detergent with 1.5 litres of water, it can be used as a great alternative for handwash. They also found out that the handwash we used isn't potent enough to kill some powerful germs. This soapy water is very cheap, only 5 taka per bottle. I thought that this should be known by people, especially now. I've also installed it outside our house, so that our neighbours can use it before entering their homes.