The Right Way When Sneezing And Coughing – The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives from various aspects. We can no longer interact directly freely as before, protect ourselves and those around us by implementing health protocols, and we are again being taught to maintain cleanliness in order to prevent disease transmission.
One of the things to watch out for is coughing and sneezing. In the past, these two symptoms were considered normal, but now it can make you and those around you worry. In addition, considering that COVID-19 is transmitted through droplets, the ethics of coughing and sneezing need to be properly understood.
In addition, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), these droplets can spread and land on surfaces. So, maybe you touch it, then hold your face without washing your hands first, allowing the SARS-CoV-2 virus to enter the body.
Therefore, it is important to know the correct ethics of coughing and sneezing. Not only to prevent COVID-19, but also other diseases that are transmitted through droplets.
1. Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, elbow, or the top of the palm
If you cough or sneeze, it is common practice to cover your nose and mouth. Even alone, SARS-CoV-2 droplets can circulate in the air and stick to surfaces for long periods of time.
So, always have a tissue to cover your nose and mouth when sneezing. Not stored, immediately throw the tissue in its place. Do not litter, instead use people and spread COVID-19 without realizing it.
If there is no tissue, use the inner elbow. Do not cover your mouth and nose with your palms.
2. Wash hands after coughing or sneezing
After covering your cough or sneezing with your elbow or tissue, don’t forget to always wash your hands to get rid of germs. You should also wash your hands after handling objects or surfaces that many people touch.
The CDC states that the most appropriate way to wash your hands is with soap and running water. Follow the recommended hand washing motions thoroughly for 20 seconds. If you don’t have access to washing your hands, use a hand sanitizer with an alcohol content of 60-95 percent.
3. Maintain distance or social distancing
Well, no less important, here! When coughing or sneezing, you are also advised to look away from other people. Apart from being polite, this minimizes the possibility of transmitting the micro-sized SARS-CoV-2 virus from droplet splashes.
keep a safe distance when coughing or sneezing, because droplets can spread as far as 1-2 meters.
4. Use of masks
Finally, masks are an important instrument during the COVID-19 pandemic. With a mask, you can protect yourself and others, especially if you are sneezing or coughing a lot. According to the CDC, masks can prevent transmission of COVID-19 from droplets by up to 70 percent.
Make sure you use a mask with enough layers to protect yourself from droplets. Immediately replace masks that are no longer suitable for use. If your mask can be washed, wash it immediately with a soap that contains a disinfectant. Masks that are not suitable for use actually increase the risk of being infected with COVID-19.
Then, if you already wear a mask, is it free anywhere? Wait a minute! Even though masks reduce the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission by up to 70 percent, keep your distance or stay at home if you feel unfit or have no interest in going out.
Confused about getting COVID-19 or coughing a cold?
In conclusion, covering coughs and sneezes is a part of manners, even in times of pandemic this is part of health protocols. If you don’t feel well, it’s better to stay at home, even when you don’t have an urgent need.
If you have coughs and colds, now we can no longer just think of them as the flu or the common cold cough. This is because coughs and colds can also be symptoms of COVID-19 infection. So, you have to pay attention to the symptoms and differentiate them.
In the case of a common cold or flu or cough, the symptoms generally include:
Body aches and chills
Blocked or runny nose
Sometimes diarrhea and vomiting
However, if you experience the following symptoms, be aware of COVID-19:
Fever or chills
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Pain in muscles or in certain body parts
Loss of ability to taste (ageusia) and / or smell (anosmia)
Blocked or runny nose
Nausea and vomiting
The common cold cough can be treated at home. However, if these symptoms do not improve after two weeks, get worse, or are accompanied by other symptoms, you should check with the nearest health care facility.
That is an explanation of the ethics of coughing and sneezing, which are not only important during a pandemic, but are important for making healthy habits. Apart from being polite, practicing the ethics of coughing and sneezing properly is also a way to maintain cleanliness and health, and prevent disease transmission.