Coronavirus, or COVID-19, originated in Wuhan, China and has been found in three cases within the state of Florida. Heightened concern over illness is happening across the country. Learning the symptoms and when to visit a physician is critical to avoiding illness and exposure until a cure is found.
What is Coronavirus?
There are several types of coronavirus, which is an upper respiratory infection. The common cold, flu and strep throat are all considered coronaviruses. However, the strain making headlines right now is COVID-19, a more serious virus similar to MERS and SARS. COVID-19 is not a virus seen before. MERS is contained primarily in the Arabian Peninsula, while a case of SARS has not been detected worldwide since 2004. Cases are being reported across the country each day, with a public health emergency declared in Florida.
Symptoms of Coronavirus
The coronavirus shares many similar symptoms to the flu. If you begin to exhibit the following, you should visit a doctor for assessment and possible testing:
- Dry, persistent cough
- Stuffed or running nose
- Sore throat
- Chest congestion
- Stomach cramps
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
According to reports from the CDC, symptoms may begin between two days and fourteen days from initial exposure. Because the virus has an incubation period, a patient will be able to spread it without knowing that they have it or without first showing symptoms. If the coronavirus is left undetected or untreated, more severe symptoms including a high fever, kidney failure and pneumonia may develop. Because of the raised concerns around the coronavirus, you should see a doctor immediately upon developing symptoms for a comprehensive diagnosis.
How Coronavirus Spreads & How to Prevent It
COVID-19 spreads through direct contact with a person, object or surface that has been infected. This includes doorknobs, elevator buttons, desktops, counters and stair railings. If a person who has the coronavirus coughs or sneezes around you, you may be infected by the droplets of moisture through the air. A vaccination is not currently available for the coronavirus, but there are precautions you can take in order to stay healthy.
- Avoid touching your face after touching surfaces, especially your eyes, ears, nose and mouth without washing your hands first. Germs can quickly build up on your hands and promptly spread through the rest of your body.
- Wipe down each of your main surfaces including your workspace, steering wheel, kitchen counter and door handles throughout your home regularly with disinfectant wipes. Many germs can live longer on surfaces than your hands.
- Wash your hands throughout the day with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the restroom, handling food or changing a diaper. If you are teaching younger children how to wash their hands, have them sing Happy Birthday while scrubbing.
- When you need to cough or sneeze, always use the “Vampire Cough” and cover your nose and mouth with the crook of your elbow. This contains germs without getting them on your hands.
Walk-In Illness Treatment in Citrus Park & Tampa, FL
If you begin to exhibit sign of illness, visit AFC Urgent Care Tampa today! Our center is open seven days a week, with extended hours to fit your needs. Testing can be done in our on-site lab to determine if you have the flu, strep or mono. For questions, please call 813-960-1100.