Like many upper respiratory infections, there are certain individuals who may be at a higher risk for complications from COVID-19 than others. Knowing whether you are at a higher risk and what the symptoms are can be critical to preparing adequately for a potential outbreak as well as getting the care you need.
Symptoms of Coronavirus
Symptoms for the coronavirus are described as “flu-like” and include:
- Dry cough
- High fever
- Chest and nasal congestion
- Runny or stuffed nose
- Stomach cramps, diarrhea or vomiting
- Shortness of breath and difficulty breathing
Who is considered high-risk for Coronavirus?
The populations who are at higher risk for complications from coronavirus include:
- Senior citizens
- Patients with heart disease
- Patients with diabetes
- Patients with lung disease
Due to the short amount of time COVID-19 has been studied, not much information is available. However, these groups were shown to be at higher risk based on information from the initial outbreak in China. If you are considered high-risk for coronavirus due to your age or chronic health issues, it is imperative that you receive proper testing and care.
Preparing for a Coronavirus Outbreak
There are several steps you should take to prepare for a potential outbreak, including:
Have adequate supplies available
If you are on prescription medications, contact your physician, specialist or insurance provider about receiving additional refills to have on hand. If you are unable to get additional medication, look into local mail-order services to limit trips to stores where you can be exposed to the virus. You should also make sure you have the supplies you would normally need to recover from the standard flu, including paper towels, napkins, tissues, over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen and bottled water. Make sure you have enough groceries to last about two weeks without a trip to the store: nonperishable goods are recommended.
Maintain your hygiene
Whenever possible, maintain a six-foot radius from anyone who is exhibiting signs of illness, especially upper respiratory infections. Wash your hands frequently throughout the day with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds after coughing, sneezing or using public transportation. Avoid touching door handles, stair railings and elevator buttons with your bare hand and touching your face. Wipe down your most frequently used surfaces, objects and devices with disinfectant wipes at least once a day to kill and break down lingering germs.
Consult with your doctor about forming a plan
Talk to your doctor about making a plan for in case an outbreak occurs, or you are exposed to the coronavirus. Determine who may be called in to help you when needed, including friends and family. Stay in touch via phone, text and email.
Illness Treatment in Saugus, MA
If you begin to exhibit signs of an upper respiratory infection and have been exposed to coronavirus, visit your local hospital for testing. They will be able to tell if you have COVID-19 or a general upper respiratory infection. For questions, please call 781-233-1000.