What is Coronavirus (COVID-19) and What are the symptoms?

What is Coronavirus (COVID-19) and What are the symptoms?

What is Coronavirus (COVID-19) and What are the symptoms?
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness – from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS. A novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new tension that has not been previously identified in humans. 

The recent outbreak seems to have originated from Wuhan, China. Many of those initially infected have either worked or frequently shopped in the Huanan seafood wholesale market in the centre of the Chinese city.

What are the symptoms this coronavirus causes?

There are a lot of sources that are confusing people with the symptoms. It is best to stick to reliable sources for information: 

Common signs of infection include:

  • respiratory symptoms –  fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. 

In more severe cases, 

  • the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.

Although this is viral pneumonia, antibiotics that are used normally are of no use. As per findings, recovery depends a lot on the strength of the immune system. A lot of fatalities have been caused due to the infected being in poor health condition already. 

Coronavirus is transmitted in the following ways:

  • Coughing and sneezing without covering the mouth can disperse droplets into the air.
  • Touching or shaking hands with a person who has the virus 
  • Making contact with a surface or object that has the virus and then touching your face
  • Some animal coronaviruses, such as feline coronavirus (FCoV), may spread through contact with faeces. However, it is unclear whether this also applies to human coronaviruses.

How to protect yourself from the deadly Coronavirus?

No vaccine is currently available for COVID-19. Research is underway, well, until then we all know ‘Prevention is better than cure’. 

  • Wash your hands regularly – Apply soap and wash for at least 20 secs
  • Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or cough or sneeze into your elbow instead of your hands. 
  • Use face masks – They will offer some protection. 
  • Seek early medical help if you start showing COVID-19 like symptoms
  • Be extra careful while travelling

World Health Organization Coronavirus disease situation dashboard presents official daily counts of COVID-19 cases and deaths worldwide, while providing a hub to other resources. The official WHO site has Interactive tools, including maps, epidemic curves, other charts and graphics with downloadable data, allowing users to track and explore the latest trends, numbers and statistics at global, regional and country levels.

For latest information on COVID-19 Information by Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi, visit the Official Website of ICMR New Delhi.

You may also visit the official website of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, for latest updates and guidelines on COVID-19 Vaccination.

Do not delay your visit to your General Practitioner if you notice any symptoms listed above.

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