remember how to avoid coronavirus infection

The increase in Covid-19 cases recorded in recent weeks has led Brazil to the fourth wave of the disease in two years of pandemic. With the coronavirus in greater circulation again, some precautions to avoid infection were once again recommended by doctors to avoid the occurrence of serious cases, deaths and sequelae of the long Covid. It is important to remember that reinfection is possible and, even with the vaccine, everyone can transmit the virus.

In the assessment of infectious disease specialist Ana Helena Germoglio, the main changes between the current wave and the previous ones are in the characteristics of the virus, which has become less lethal and more transmissible, and in the immune response of patients.

“Most people already have some immunity against the coronavirus thanks to vaccines or because they have had an infectious condition previously”, explains the doctor.

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Vaccination

The combination of complete vaccination – with the three doses of the primary course and booster – and the proper use of the mask is still the greatest ally in the prevention of Covid-19, especially for immunosuppressed patients, who are at greater risk from the coronavirus infection. by having a decrease in the body’s natural defenses.

“We know that immunity starts to drop about four months after immunization. Therefore, the ideal is to take all available booster doses”, says Ana Helena.

Mask

Going back to wearing a mask can be especially difficult for those who have readjusted to the world without them in recent months. Still, items are one of the main ways to defend against infection. The most suitable models are the PFF2/N95, which fits behind the head, and the surgical mask — but, in the absence of better options, experts point out that any mask is better than none, and the cloth mask also offers some protection.

According to the infectologist, when evaluating the environment to decide whether or not to use the protective item, more important than observing whether it is open or closed is to assess the risk according to the number of people present.

“Being in an open environment, but with many people around you, also generates a great risk of transmission”, he ponders.

In addition, Ana Helena recalls that the population should assess the individual risk of evolving to the severe form of Covid-19, taking into account risk factors such as age, comorbidities and not having completed the full cycle of vaccination.

testing

When you experience the first symptoms – such as cough, runny nose, fever and sore throat – it is recommended that everyone take the antigen test or PCR to prevent the spread of the virus. Self-tests, which are antigen-based, can be purchased at pharmacies and done at home. The results come out in a few minutes.

In cases where the test is negative but symptoms persist, the test should be repeated within 24 hours.

It is important to take the exam mainly to start isolation. Without the diagnosis, the patient continues to leave the house and can infect other people.

“Even with mild symptoms, the more infected people persist circulating and transmitting the disease, the more this cycle of viral transmission is perpetuated”, says the infectologist.

Social isolation for seven days after the onset of symptoms for mild and moderate cases, when there is no fever, continues to be indicated to avoid the cycle of viral transmission. If the patient continues to test positive on the tenth day, he must wait another three days and repeat the test.

Ana Helena believes that, in the future, when a large part of the population is fully vaccinated, isolation may no longer be necessary.

Here’s how to take the test at home:

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About Abhishek Pratap

Food maven. Unapologetic travel fanatic. MCU's fan. Infuriatingly humble creator. Award-winning pop culture ninja.

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