The Coronavirus, which was first detected in Wuhan, China, has infected more than 40 000 people worldwide and killed over 1000 to date.
The virus has an incubation period of up to 14 days, but typical symptoms, such as a fever, cough and shortness of breath may appear as early as two days after contracting the virus.
NO CASES IN SA SO FAR In SA, measures are also being ramped up in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Travellers are being scanned by thermal cameras at ports of entry to limit transmission. There were 42 suspected cases in SA, but all tests results have come up negative. It may, however, be prudent to prepare for and understand how to prevent the contraction of the virus. [Updated 10 March 2020]
“…ways to reduce one’s risk is to keep up proper hygiene practices, such as washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Alternatively, alcohol-based hand sanitisers should be used. Face-to-face contact and crowded environments where germs typically thrive […are riskier]”, says Jennings, spokesperson for Pharma Dynamics.
CLEARING UP SOME MISCONCEPTIONS AROUND THE CORONAVIRUS
To clear up some of the misconceptions around the virus, Jennings provides the following advice:
- She says it’s still safe to receive a letter or package from China as the virus doesn’t survive long on objects.
- There is no evidence that pets can be infected by the Coronavirus, but always wash your hands after petting or playing with your dog or cat to protect you against other germs.
- Vaccines against other respiratory diseases such as, pneumonia, does not protect you against the Coronavirus, which is a brand new virus (2019-nCoV). Scientists are trying to develop a vaccine against 2019-nCoV.
- While rinsing with saline solution is a good way to clean out your sinuses, it won’t protect you against 2019-nCoV.
- The same is true for mouthwash.
- Eating garlic, which does contain some antimicrobial properties, unfortunately also offers no protection.
- Rubbing sesame oil or petroleum jelly on your nose will also not reduce your risk of infection.
- Everyone (young and old) is vulnerable to 2019-nCoV, but those with an existing condition, such as asthma, heart disease or diabetes may be at greater risk and should take extra care.
- As 2019-nCoV is a virus, taking antibiotics won’t help.
- Wearing a mask also only offers limited protection as one has to remove it to eat and when someone sneezes on the mask, the virus could still pass through.
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NASAL SPRAY SALES SURGE IN THE UK
Sales of an over-the-counter nasal spray that powder-coats the nasal membranes, making it difficult for airborne viruses to enter the body, has surged by a whopping 688% in the UK amid fears of the dreaded coronavirus.
In one of the clinical trials using the nasal spray, researchers noted a 90% drop in infections, and in those that did contract an upper respiratory tract infection (URTI), the nasal spray decreased the duration of symptoms by 2,5 days, compared to the previous year.
In South Africa, the same product is branded as Nexa Shield ™ and is distributed by Pharma Dynamics.
Nicole Jennings, says UK consumers are taking every precaution to protect themselves against contracting 2019-nCoV, which might have led to the surge in sales of the nasal spray.
She says Nexa Shield ™ includes natural cellulose powder of vegetable origin, called hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC), which shields the nasal membrane from airborne allergens and viruses.
“It’s backed by over 20 clinical trials inclusive of comparative studies of cellulose powder. One of the main points of entry for airborne germs is through one’s nose and it’s thus very effective as the first line of defence [in addition to the tips shared above],” says Jennings.
CONTENT SHARED BY PHARMA DYNAMICS, THIS IN NOT A SPONSORED POST