What is Coronavirus?
A group of related viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds is known as coronaviruses. However, in humans – coronaviruses cause respiratory tract infections (RTI) – In some cases, the infections can be mild, in which an individual may have the common flu. Lethal coronaviruses include SARS (Severe acute respiratory syndrome) causes by SARS-CoV. MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome ) also known as camel flu, caused by MERS-CoV as well as COVID-19, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).
COVID-19 was first discovered in Wuhan, Central China in 2019 and has spread globally resulting in the coronavirus pandemic.
Common Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath some other less common symptoms include muscle pain, sputum production, and sore throat.
In other cases, some individuals progress to severe pneumonia and multi-organ failure. COVID-19, coronavirus was declared a pandemic and a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.
- Dry cough
- Sputum production (mucus that is coughed up from the lower airways)
- Shortness of breath
- Muscle pain or joint pain
- Sore throat
- Nausea or vomiting
- Nasal congestion
- Haemoptysis (coughing up of blood or blood-stained mucus)
- Conjunctival congestion
COVID-19 and Pregnancy
WHO (World Health Organization) suggests that If one is pregnant, one can help protect themselves against COVID-19 by:
- Washing your hands frequently
- Keeping space between yourself and others
- Avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Practicing respiratory hygiene
COVID-19 and Breastfeeding
WHO suggests COVID-19 patients can breastfeed if they wish to do so by doing the following:
- Practice respiratory hygiene and wear a mask (This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze)
- Wash before and after touching the baby
- Routinely clean and disinfect surfaces
YOU- protect yourself and others around you
You can protect yourself from the COVID-19 virus by thoroughly washing your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or with water and soap for at least 20 seconds. This will kill viruses that may be on your hands.
Whether it’s you coughing and/or sneezing ensure to maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between one another to protect everyone and yourself.
When someone coughs or sneezes, they expel small droplets that may contain the coronavirus. If you are too close to someone, you can breathe in the droplets and may potentially infect the next person.
Your hands may potentially have viruses as they are mostly used to touch many surfaces and once contaminated, it will take a touch to the mouse, nose and/or eyes – from there, the virus will enter your body, making you sick.
When you don’t feel well, please stand home and protect the people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and COVID-19.
At the time of publication, South Africa had 240 cases of Coronavirus