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Public health advice is mostly just common sense

The last few weeks have been dramatic in matters of health. Every facet of life appears to be getting disrupted by the ongoing viral pandemic. Whilst this isn’t the first pandemic to ever hit the world, it certainly appears to be the most publicized. All this thanks to a digitally inter-connected world, where news is almost globally instantaneous.

Some degree of panic was always inevitable. Not unexpectedly, governments have instituted several measures to mitigate unchecked spread of the virus. Some have mistakenly interpreted this to indicate a looming calamity, hence the observed irrational behavior reported in so many places. This shouldn’t be the case, all that is required is to follow the simple preventive tips from the health authorities.

Washing hands isn’t new. Nor are hand sanitizers a new phenomenon. We didn’t need a pandemic to get ourselves into appropriate hygiene practices. Keeping your hands clean protects you from countless infectious bugs, the current one is only an addition. No one needs to stockpile box loads of sanitizers, soap and water are as good. Hand hygiene is just common sense, though no harm done if the government needs to remind some about its role in disease prevention.

Coughs and sneezes have always been around. No one should ever cough or sneeze in a socially unacceptable manner. Covering your nose and mouth, and using a disposable tissue should be an automatic reaction. But some don’t, they need reminding. Try your best to keep bugs to yourself, and keep a reasonable distance from others who might care less. As advised already, all those hugs and kisses, with anyone, can wait another day. Crowded and poorly ventilated places are a good recipe for bugs to spread along. A simple change of behavior will keep you protected, again just simple and plain common sense.

We all have been guilty of ignoring and dismissing persistent symptoms. Anything unusual and unexpected, in the height of a pandemic, should be promptly checked. It doesn’t matter whether you have no known infected contacts. Or have been self-isolating. It’s clear that all the transmission facts aren’t known yet. Some suspect transmission rates are being driven by individuals with no apparent symptoms. You must be proactive, and act appropriately, like you should in all other health matters.

As with all worldly events, this pandemic will come to pass. We’ll be left with our recurring health issues to deal with. You could take a leaf from the current health advice to inform on your ongoing health behavior. This way, it will not matter one bit if another pandemic comes along, you’ll already be using common sense to keep yourself and others healthier.

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