Coronavirus Disease – Busting the Myths

In my opinion, the rationale behind these misinformation and fake news is called INFODEMIC. So, it’s very critical to be fighting a pandemic as well as an infodemic. Infodemic is more dangerous than the virus because it spreads faster and even kills. Dr. L. Kaumi.


Disease
Coronavirus disease
(COVID-19)

Virus
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2
(SARS-CoV-2)

Everyone is at risk.

This is true. SARS-CoV-2, like other coronaviruses, can infect people of any age. It can also be deadly in any age group. Older adults or individuals with pre-existing health conditions, such as diabetes or asthma, are more likely to become severely ill. Children are not immune. They however develop milder symptoms compared to adults. Some countries like Belgium, UK and Iran have reported deaths in children. Parents need to safe-guard their kids.

5G has link to the pandemic

False. 5G is a wireless mobile network released in 2019 to help improve telecommunications and mobile connectivity. Coronaviruses were first discovered in the 1930s when an acute respiratory infection of domesticated chickens was shown to be caused by infectious bronchitis virus. The most recently discovered coronavirus causes coronavirus disease (COVID-19). There is no relationship between 5G and COVID-19.

Hot temperatures do not prevent COVID-19

You can catch COVID-19, whether it is sunny or cold. Countries with hot weather have reported cases of COVID-19. It can be transmitted everywhere, it may be possible that the transmission rate varies with temperature and humidity. However pandemics often don’t behave in the same way as seasonal outbreaks. Taking a hot bath or using hand dryers will not prevent it. The normal body temperature remains around 36.5°C to 37°C, regardless of the temperature of your bath or shower.

You can recover from the coronavirus disease

Majority of the people who get COVID-19 can recover and eliminate the virus from their bodies. This is a fact. Most times your antibodies neutralize the virus, then you will have immunity. Reinfection or getting infected again might still be possible. If you contract the disease, make sure you treat your symptoms as soon as possible. Holding your breath for 10 seconds or more without coughing or feeling discomfort will not save you.

Alcohol and Smoking

Drinking alcohol does not protect you against COVID-19 and can be dangerous. Alcoholism weakens the body system. Smoking is not good for the lungs. Alcohol and tobacco are among the top causes of preventable deaths in the world. Washing your hands with alcohol based products will help reduce infection. However spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body will not kill viruses that have already entered your body.

Lemon, ginger, garlic, vitamins etc cannot prevent COVID-19

Lemon tea might alleviate flu like symptoms like sore throat. It is important to understand that lemon, ginger, baking soda etc will not cure coronavirus. There is no scientific evidence that lemon, turmeric or garlic prevents COVID-19 even though the later has some antimicrobial effect. In general, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends consuming adequate fruit and vegetables as part of a healthy diet. Are you taking Vitamins? Think twice. Just because vitamins and supplements can help alleviate symptoms of flu doesn’t mean they are the best measures to prevent and treat COVID-19.

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No transmission from mosquito bites

To date there has been no evidence that suggests COVID-19 could be transmitted by mosquitoes or insects. The disease is caused by a respiratory virus which spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose.

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Some patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. Around 1 out of every 6 people who gets COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing.

Thermometers and thermal scanners are not accurate detecting infection

Thermometers and thermal scanners are effective in detecting people who have developed a fever because of infection with the new coronavirus. Remember the average body temperature of adults ranges from 36.1°C (97°F) to 37.2°C (99°F). It usually takes between 2 and 10 days before people who are infected become sick and develop a fever. There are many infected people without fever. Others might take antipyretics  like Paracetamol and Ibuprofen that will keep their temperature normal.

Rising nose with saline water prevents COVID-19

No. There is such evidence that rinsing the nose with saline water protects people from the new coronavirus infection. There is some limited evidence that regularly rinsing nose with saline can help people recover more quickly from the common cold. However, regularly rinsing the nose does not prevent respiratory infections.

Are there any specific medicines to prevent or treat the new coronavirus?

Till the time of writing, there is no specific medicine recommended to prevent or treat the new coronavirus. Drugs like (Hydroxi)Chloroquine seems to block the coronavirus in lab studies. There is insufficient scientific evidence at the moment concerning their effective use in treatment of patients with COVID-19. Always consult your doctor before use. It can damage the eye and heart. There are many on-going trials including International SOLIDARITY trial

What of antibiotics?

Antibiotics work on bacteria. The new coronavirus is a virus. That is why Antivirals like Remdesivir, Lopinavir/Ritonavir etc are on trials. However, if you are hospitalized, you may receive antibiotics because bacterial co-infection is possible. Common drugs used include Azithromycin and Ceftriaxone. Do not use these medications unless your doctor recommends that you do so.

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  • Thanks for the clarification especially of some of the misconceptions and myths we have heard about Covid-19. Look forward to reading more real time updated .

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