Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Five myths about the coronavirus we need to clear up right now

Myths about the coronavirus seem to spread faster than the virus itself. (WYDaily/ Courtesy of Pexels)
Myths about the coronavirus seem to spread faster than the virus itself. (WYDaily/ Courtesy of Pexels)

It’s been a long year.

A lot of news and discoveries have come out about involving the coronavirus, but amid all the fear, confusion, and frustration, there are some pieces of information that may or may not be true.

Let’s just get some facts straight, shall we?

1. Grocery shopping

According to the CDC, the risk of infection from SARS-CoV-2 from food products, food packaging, or bags is thought to be low. It’s still a good idea to follow food safety practices, but it is not necessary to use disinfectants on food packaged in cardboard or plastic wrap. In fact, you really shouldn’t.

With groceries like meat, poultry, eggs, and other perishables, you should refrigerate or freeze them within 2 hours of buying.

For produce, gently rinse fruits and vegetables under cold, running tap water. You can scrub uncut, firm produce with a clean brush, like potatoes and melons, even if you don’t plan to peel it.

Salt, pepper, vinegar, lemon and lime juice are not effective in sanitizing produce.

2. Alcohol use

Who hasn’t tried to make their own hand-sanitizer? Yes, rubbing alcohol can be used to make homemade hand-sanitizers, and alcohol and chlorine sprays will disinfect surfaces from the virus.

On the other hand, consuming alcohol, no matter the type, will not rid your body of the virus once you’re infected.

3. Proper quarantining methods

If you suspect you or someone else in your household is sick or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for the coronavirus, then you should absolutely stay at home and quarantine. The CDC advises people to stay at home for at least 14 days after your last contact with a person who has the virus.

If you haven’t been in contact with a person who has COVID-19, and you are just waiting for test results back, then you don’t have to quarantine for 14 days.

Not quarantining while waiting for COVID-19 test results? Think again. One misconception is people thinking they do not have to quarantine until they get their test results back and if they don’t, they could be spreading the virus if they are actually positive.

“One problem we run into is that people who are tested usually have some kind of symptoms or believe they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive,” said Irene Ferrainolo, spokeswoman for the Peninsula Health District, which covers Newport News, York County, James City County, Williamsburg and Poquoson. “If you suspect that you are positive, you need to quarantine yourself.”

4. Ultraviolet lights and sunshine

Ultraviolet light, while nontraditional, can be used to disinfect surfaces, but according to the CDC, “The efficacy of these disinfection methods against the virus that causes COVID-19 is not known.”

The same goes for sunlight.

So should you use UV light on yourself? No, because you could cause skin irritation or worse, cancer.

5. Self treatment

Many people take vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, green tea or echinacea to boost their immune systems, but there is no proof showing these methods are effective in preventing you from getting sick.

And at no point should you try self-medicating if you have COVID-19.

Using vaccines for other diseases, such as vaccines against pneumonia or the flu, don’t provide protection against the COVID-19 virus.

If there are any other facts you are confused about, then you can check out the CDC website or call your doctor.

And just so we’re all clear, no, you cannot get the virus by using a 5G mobile network.


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