I am not a doctor. I am not in any way whatsoever part of the medical field. So of course if your doctor or medical practitioner, or the CDC or AMA or WHO come out with further advice, please do follow their guidance. Stay healthy out there, folks.
With that hope in mind, for the moment here are the 5 things I have gleaned from a close listen to the reporting and advice to date, just to boil what we know so far, down to the essentials.
So don’t panic – just start with the basics …
5. Thoroughly wash your hands, (meaning for about 20 seconds, preferably with soap & hot water if available – or with a sanitizer with 60% or higher alcohol content), and generally keep your hands away from your face.
4. Thoroughly wash your hands, before and after you eat. (Your dentist will also suggest brushing your teeth after eating, which is sound advice — but to be clear, that’s protective against other things you probably also don’t want, like plaque, gingivitis and cavities, not the coronavirus.)
3. Thoroughly wash your hands every time you go to the restroom. I can’t believe I still have to say this to grown @$$ people. Every time. Every time. You know who you are.
2. Thoroughly wash your hands after you touch public objects (assuming you can’t avoid touching them altogether). Door handles/knobs. Elevator buttons. Gas pumps. If other people will have touched them (or coughed/sneezed on them) sometime before you touched them, you’ll want to go wash your hands.
And the number one thing to help protect yourself from getting coronavirus is, you guessed it…
1. Thoroughly wash your hands. And keep your hands away from your face as much as you can. And hey, wash the towel you dry your hands on frequently too.
There you have it. Five concrete things you can do to protect yourself and the people around you from Covid19 / coronavirus.
Bonus: These 5 tips also help reduce your chance of getting flu.
4 Post Scripts:
PS Everyone else would really love it if you could also not cough or sneeze on stuff. If you can help it, which probably you can’t. If you need to cough or sneeze though – preferably into a tissue, discarded properly, and then wash your hands thoroughly before you touch anything else. And if you have reason to think you’re infected or have been advised to self-quarantine, do that. Just keep your germs to yourself.
PPS Blue Dawn dish soap. They might be out of wipes and sanitizers and what all else at the store, but you can probably still find blue Dawn. I do not get paid to say it and I am not sponsored or otherwise affiliated with the company… Blue Dawn dish soap cuts grease and breaks down fats. Thats why they use it to clean the baby ducks after an oil spill. Breaking down the fat layer is the part of washing that kills this virus.
PPPS If you’re not sure, 20 seconds is roughly two rounds of singing Happy Birthday to You or one round of singing the ABCs song, or roughly the length of the final Jeopardy theme. Or figure out something else you wouldn’t mind running though your head while you wash, and time how much of that is 20 seconds.
PPPPS if you’re not following #3 regularly anyway, and you are older than a toddler, you need to be re-potty trained because you missed a key factor in the process the first time around. Plus the people in the public bathroom who are washing their hands see you coming and going without pausing to wash. My dad is one of the people who sees you bypass the sink, so now I know you’re out there, gentlemen, being disgusting. And probably infectious.