If you are a citizen of the world, I’m sure you have been feeling the panic we all have been feeling in regard to the outbreak of Coronavirus. Stocks have fallen sharply, many people have stopped going to work, and students have been sent home from their Universities and schools. While it feels terrifying, something else has been spreading faster than the coronavirus ever could hope to. That something is panic.

A pandemic like what we are faced with now must be approached with a level head. Nationwide panic is not the solution. The way to keep this disease from taking lives requires the calm effort of individuals, not swarms of scared people. Protecting your loved ones and the fellow members of your community can slow this virus and can protect millions of people who may be in danger. In order to help you to understand the virus, and to help you understand how to protect yourself and your community, here are some quick essential facts.

Fact #1: Surgical masks are NOT effective for prevention but ARE for preventing the spread.

There’s a reason why the people handling coronavirus are required to wear a HazMat suit. Typical surgical masks do almost nothing to protect you from the coronavirus. The virus is extremely small and can easily pass through the thin fibers of the surgical mask. Wearing a mask will not keep you safe. The only masks shown to protect you are special masks with an N95 rating, which are more expensive However, if you are diagnosed with the disease, surgical masks can help significantly reduce the number of particles you cough into the air. This reduces the spread of the virus to other people!

Fact #2: Wash your hands!

The World Health Organization (WHO) stated that washing your hands as often as possible is very effective at stopping the spread, as well as protecting yourself. Do not forget to wash your hands! Hand sanitizer works well as well, but generally is not as effective as good old soap and water. Count to twenty, sing the alphabet, or do whatever tricks you want to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds! This will help keep you and your loved ones safe.

Fact #3: Viruses get less aggressive over time.

Your immune system is amazing, learning exactly how to fight off a specific disease after every war it has won. But, how can you get sick with diseases, like the flu, more than once? This is because viruses have the ability to change over time. Because of how viruses spread, viruses mutate and get LESS severe as time goes on, as they spread through a population. A mild virus is more likely to keep its host alive, letting it spread to more people. This is part of the reason why Ebola did not spread very quickly across nations in the outbreak a couple years back. Anyone who got it showed symptoms very quickly and was very likely to die rather than spread it around! So, for those of you worried coronavirus will eventually come–the longer you wait to get sick, the less severe it might be!

Fact #4: Coronavirus can be everywhere.

Coronavirus spreads from people who are sick. It spreads from the water droplets that they cough up or from their saliva. Making sure you don’t come in contact with these things is extremely important, because it does not take a lot of viruses to make you sick. The virus can live on surfaces for around 3 days, so make sure to wash your hands, especially in public areas!

Fact #5: It takes 5 days to get sick.

Scientists have found the virus takes an average of 5 days after getting exposed to the virus to get sick. Even scarier, it has been found that the virus can be spreadable from person to person, even if the person spreading it feels completely fine! No matter what, even if you are around healthy people, including family, it is important that you are always washing your hands and keeping your hands off your face.

Fact #6: The younger you are, the safer you are.

Coronavirus is more likely to hurt the elderly than the young. If you are above the age of 80, coronavirus is extremely dangerous, with a mortality rate of 18% from the data in China. For teenagers, however, the mortality rate is .02%, which is very low. Keeping our seniors safe should be the top priority of everyone to minimizing damage from this virus. Maybe put off visiting elderly family a couple months down the line. They are in a lot more danger than you are.

Even though coronavirus is dangerous, I encourage you to try to stay as calm and relaxed as possible. This will pass. Use the supplies you have in moderation and help others if they need it. Any benefit to the others in your community is a benefit to you, helping keep the virus away from everyone. Perhaps this virus could help bring our country together in the end! Stay safe, everyone!

-the Kare~n~Herbs Team

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