Help keep yourself, your loved ones & your community healthy
You've gotten the basics down to a T – but what else can you do to help stop COVID-19 (coronavirus) spreading? We explain all.
First things first, let’s talk about how COVID-19 is passed from person to person.
As you may know, coronavirus is spread through respiratory droplets when an infected person talks, sneezes or coughs. These droplets can reach another person’s nose, mouth or eyes, or fall onto nearby surfaces and objects. If someone touches a contaminated surface or object (such as a desk or phone), and then touches their nose, mouth or eyes, they could catch coronavirus. Even if someone is infected but doesn’t have symptoms (that’s called being asymptomatic, by the way), they can still spread the virus through respiratory droplets.
To help prevent the spread of infection and avoid being exposed to coronavirus, we’ve gathered five handy tips.
Wash your hands
You’ve heard it before, and you’ll hear it again – washing your hands regularly, for at least 20 seconds, is one of the most effective ways to help stop the spread of the virus.
Get your hands nice and soapy then scrub away, not forgetting your palms, under your nails, your fingertips, between your fingers, the sides of your thumbs, and even the tops. No sink nearby? You should use anti-viral hand sanitiser gel if soap and water aren’t available.** Just pop a small amount onto dry hands and rub. Simple.
Be sneeze savvy
Whether you’re coughing or sneezing, try to cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve. This will help prevent germs propelling into the air or across the room.
You should always put your used tissues in the bin immediately afterwards and then wash your hands (20 seconds, remember!).
Clean touch points
Coronavirus can survive on surfaces for several days, however using an anti-viral disinfectant can help to kill it. With that in mind, you should clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces every day, including counters, table tops, doorknobs, toilets, phones and keyboards.
If you’re heading to the gym, remember to wipe down machines and weights with disinfectant wipes before and after use.
Let air in
Whether you prop open a door or keep a window open, you should try and ventilate your home while you have any visitors (for example care workers), and then just after they’ve left.
Get the COVID-19 vaccination, if you haven’t already
Currently, you may be able to access a seasonal COVID-19 vaccination if you’re at increased risk of contracting severe COVID-19.
You or your child may be eligible for a seasonal COVID-19 vaccination if you are:
• Aged 65 or over
• Aged six months to 64 years old and at increased risk (for instance if you have a long-term lung or heart condition)
• Living in a care home for older adults
• A frontline health or social care worker
• Aged 16 to 64 years old and are a carer
• Aged 12 to 64 years old and live with someone with a weakened immune system
Speak to your GP or pop into your local Boots pharmacy to find out more.
Scientists are working hard to discover further steps we can take to help reduce the spread of coronavirus. You may have heard rumours about mouthwash, which usually contains an antiseptic to kill germs that can live on your teeth, gums and on your tongue. There's no evidence it has any effect on helping prevent coronavirus. Heard some other rumours? Us too. Head over to our coronavirus myth busters page to help separate fact from fiction.
There you have it! Five ways you can help keep yourself and your community safe and healthy.