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Common Myths about Coronavirus Explained

There is a deluge of information circulating about the 2019 novel coronavirus these days and hence, it is imperative for you to learn what is true and what is not. What follows next is a brief discussion on some of the most common and widely propagated misconceptions about the 2019-nCoV and the respective facts.

1. COVID-19 vaccine is widely available for ready purchase.

FALSE

The first phase of a clinical trial to evaluate the efficacy of the newly-designed COVID-19 vaccine has recently commenced at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute, (KPWHRI), Seattle. Hence, it is too early to make any predictions concerning its mass availability.

2. Gargling with or swallowing bleach, taking steroids or acetic acids, spraying chlorine or alcohol on the entire body, applying essential oils, ethanol, saltwater, chlorine or other substances can help you protect from the 2019 novel coronavirus.

FALSE

These recommendations will not safeguard you from the virus. Furthermore, some of these could prove to be harmful.

You can prevent getting infected simply by ensuring the following.

  1. Frequently and thoroughly washing your hands with hot water and soap
  2. Refrain from close contact with anyone who is coughing, sneezing, or ill
  3. Stay at your home in the event you are sick

Spraying chlorine or alcohol on the whole body is not going to kill the pathogens that have already penetrated your body. On the contrary, applying such materials can cause damage to the mucous membranes of your mouth and eyes. Although chemicals like chlorine and alcohol are routinely utilized for disinfecting the surfaces, you must understand that they can only be applied under appropriate recommendations.

3. COVID-19 is created by the humans.

FALSE

The 2019 new coronavirus was likely to have initially propagated from the bats and now it is spreading through human-to-human contact. Studies have established that when a virus started evolving inside its original carrier, such as pig, bird, or snake and eventually infects the human, a disease outbreak occurs and the same has happened in the case of the 2019-nCoV as well.

4. Purchasing or ordering anything from China is to make the end-user/s sick.

FALSE

Physicians and researchers across the globe are busy studying the COVID-19 and analyzing its behavior. As of now, it is noted that most of the viruses like the 2019-nCoV is, are unable to remain alive on the surface for a very long time, and hence, the chances of getting infected from a consignment that was shipped days or even weeks ago is highly unlikely.

5. Wearing a face mask will help you prevent COVID-19.

FALSE

Care providers can be benefited from wearing tight-fitting, professional-grade respirators, for instance, the N95. 

However, wearing disposable surgical masks is not advisable for the general public, who do not have any respiratory illness. They do not offer a snug fit due to their lightweight and may help pass tiny infected droplets so that could easily penetrate your body through the eyes, mouth, or the nasal pathway. In addition, if an unsuspecting individual whose hands happen to be contaminated with the virus touches own face underneath the mask, then the person might become infected.

People with a history of respiratory conditions can choose to wear them for reducing the odds of infecting others around them.

The Bottom Line

It is necessary to realize that the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak is a controllable pandemic and hence,   we should all keep ourselves updated with the verifiable information only about the 2019 novel coronavirus. Keep reading our blogs and let us know in the comments the topics that you would like us to write on.

In addition to our blogs, we also have telemedicine service that is exclusively available to the registered users on PatientMD. Visit a physician without leaving your home/workplace or on the go! We have experts in as many as sixteen specialties, including general medicine (Dr. Anandmoy Dutta, Dr. Chirag Jain, Dr. Koushik Samanta, and Dr. Ruhi Satija, to name a few).

REFERENCES

I

https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-clinical-trial-investigational-vaccine-covid-19-begins

II

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/share-facts.html

III

https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/novel-coronavirus/facts

IV

https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public/myth-busters

V

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus/2019-novel-coronavirus-myth-versus-fact