A widespread pandemic can be scary, but there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of infectious disease during a pandemic or epidemic.
The world is long overdue for a world-wide pandemic.
That’s what scientists who study this are saying.
Wait, you tell me – what about SARS? AIDS? Zika virus?
Yes, these are pandemics. A pandemic is an epidemic of infectious disease that has spread across a large region and possible even worldwide.
And all of these have been scary. AIDS kills millions, especially in Africa.
In comparison, in 1348 and 1349, the highly contagious Black Death killed about half of the British population. Death happened quickly, within a week of infection. For the next three centuries, a new outbreak about every twenty years again killed 30-50% of the population, with smaller outbreaks every five years killing about 5% of the people.
Modern medical knowledge, technology, and better communication have all helped to limit the spread of infectious diseases like the Black Death, Zika virus, and deadly influenza.
Scientists believe that it’s just a matter of time before a mutated virus appears that is as highly contagious and deadly as the Black Death but mutates as quickly as HIV. When that happens, scientists and doctors will have difficulty containing it.
It’s not a matter of if it will happen… but when it will happen.
And now I have 9 tips to follow to reduce your risk of getting an infectious disease during a pandemic. Stay safe!
Avoid crowded places and other people
The best way to minimize risk is to avoid others. You’ll never know who is infected. Take a look at the 9 most dangerous places during an epidemic.
Wear masks and carry hand sanitizer
Don’t be embarrassed at appearing paranoid. It’s better to be safe than sorry. The Japanese have already made them fashionable. Wear N-95 masks if you travel on public transport or must go through a crowded area.
Prepare food at home
I have written frequently about how important it is to eat at home even during normal circumstances. But when it comes to a public health emergency, it’s even more important.
Avoid eating out. You’ll not know who is preparing your food … or what they’re doing when they prepare your food. Cook at home and wash your meat and vegetables well.
Cleanliness at home
Keep your house clean and disinfect common areas. If you’re sensitive to strong chemicals like bleach, you can rest easy in the knowledge that pure white vinegar is an excellent disinfectant.
Avoid wearing shoes into the house and tracking germs in.
Wash all your street clothes as soon as you can. If you have a washing machine in your home, remove your clothing immediately, drop them into the washing machine, and take a shower.
Avoid sexual intercourse with strangers
Most of the readers of this site are probably NOT routinely having sex with strangers. I recognize that.
But in case you are that rare reader who does, at least sometimes, then don’t – as long as there is an infectious disease pandemic.
Don’t sleep with someone you met a bar, and definitely not someone you met online.
In fact, even with your spouse or regular partner, you’ll want to use protection during a pandemic.
Remember that a person can be infected before they show symptoms, and exchange of bodily fluids is one of the fastest ways to spread a disease.
Wash your hands often and avoid touching your face
One of the simplest and most effective ways to stay safe is regular hand washing. Your hands come into contact with many objects that may have bacteria on them.
Handling money, holding a handrail, using an ATM to withdraw cash, pressing elevator buttons, opening a door in public or flushing a toilet. are all risky actions because many people before you would have come into contact with these objects.
It is EXTREMELY difficult to keep your hands off your face. Try being aware of your hands for a day and count how often you touch your face.
Years ago, I had an allergic reaction to moldy nail polish. By the time we realized what was causing it, I had welts on every part of my body from head to toes.
Do not share
Don’t share drinks, cigarettes, straws, food, makeup, utensils, or anything similar.
Avoid swimming pools and public beaches. Saunas, gyms, cinemas, churches, etc. are all no-go zones.
People are the main carriers of disease during a pandemic. You MUST sear this fact into your mind. Isolation from the world is dreary and depressing, but it’s necessary… until the pandemic is under control.
Even when buying items from the supermarket, always wash soda cans, canned items, plastic bottles, etc. You can never be too safe.
Watch your pet
Do not let your pet roam outside freely.
Give it a good bath and keep it at home.
A pet that walks outside will pick up bacteria from outside. When it runs around your house, the germs will end up all over the place.
If you must walk your dog, always wash its feet thoroughly when you return.
Disinfect the floors and areas where the dog lies down. You should have your pets vaccinated against rabies and other diseases. ahead of time.
And always wash your hands after touching any animal.
Having a couple of these in your house will help to clean the air in your home and you’ll be safer.
Follow these pointers and you’ll reduce your risks considerably. Always remember to err on the side of caution during a public health emergency or pandemic. You can never be too safe.0