COVID-19: What To Do When You Have Been Directly Exposed To Coronavirus

COVID-19 Scenario:

You, as an emergency services responder, roll up on a vehicle accident where people are trapped. Adrenaline is rushing, training is taking over, and then after a while, your patients are safe. While in transport to the hospital – one of them begins taking a turn for the worse; coughing, vomiting but your training tells you to log roll him on one side to prevent aspiration. Then once he calms down – dreadful words come out of their mouth; “I have coronavirus.” There you were – in their face, saving their life, and now your next few weeks are jeopardized. You cannot be around your family, friends, or anyone for that matter until you get tested. You’ve been put off work – isolated even; not because you’re sick – but the fact remains you might be a carrier or may get sick at a later time. This is what it’s like being a first responder in the COVID-19 era.

By the mere title of this article, many people are going to grimace. Once someone gets the dreadful news, either knowingly or not, it isn’t easy dealing with being exposed to a person or persons who have tested positive to COVID-19.  A positive case of COVID does NOT mean the end of the world – but that your world is going to be turned upside down for days or even weeks. Let’s talk about what to expect and what to do when you have been exposed to a positive COVID case.

Masks

The most divisive aspect of this whole pandemic is whether or not to wear a mask. Do masks even work? Are they useless? What type of mask is the most protective? These are some of the pertinent questions that our society is asking that we don’t have conclusive answers for. COVID-19 airborne particles are approximately .125 microns according to the CDC, and most face coverings (N95 masks, surgical masks, etc.) will allegedly block large droplets. So, when someone coughs or sneezes, it should protect surrounding areas from the release of potentially infected droplets. In the event of COVID-19 exposure, most businesses, restaurants, and other public buildings won’t allow entrance without people wearing a mask. Some people may even make this part of their EDC going forward.

 COVID-19 Will Lead To Quarantine and Testing

In the event you have been exposed to COVID-19 it’s a good idea to go ahead and get tested. These tests may be mandated by your employer before letting you come back to work. If a company didn’t want you to test and you infected their entire staff – the business tanks; the business owner is out a lot of money, and maybe the business shuts down. In the event you feel symptomatic; SELF ISOLATE! Protect those around you. If there has never been a time when you felt lethargic, sickly, or had a recent loss of smell or taste; congrats you may have the ‘Rona. It is recommended by the CDC that one quarantines for fourteen (14) days while being tested to rule out COVID-19 as a source of your illness.

exposed to Covid-19

exposed to covid-19

Isolation: Keep Active and Entertained

One of the side effects of COVID-19 is isolation. Usually, you work, enjoy a social life, and come home to your family daily. Now, you must keep your distance due to the rapid rise in infection of coronavirus. During this period, one should find items to keep their mind entertained and active. Once people find out you have been exposed or have to quarantine – be ready for them to treat you differently. It’s the simple fact that our society doesn’t and won’t take anything seriously until it happens to them.

I have found that finding new music to listen to, new books to read, and catching up on TV shows that at one time you didn’t have time to watch are all great ideas to pass the time. Some people take this time to get back into a workout routine. The point is some people don’t like downtime, or they may even struggle with it. Some people keep busy to outrun other issues they may be dealing with, and when they ‘slow down,’ they realize that what they’ve been running from for so long isn’t gone; it’s beginning to catch up with them.

Now is also an excellent time to ensure that your EDC Bag is in working order. Double-check items that might have been used and make a list to stock your bag once you are out of isolation.

Recovery

Let’s now talk about what can happen after you have been exposed to COVID-19 and begin the recovery process. Some medications claim to either mask or rid individuals of symptoms. Some people end up on a ventilator due to how COVID-19 wreaked havoc on their respiratory system. Although this is a formidable virus to deal with, people are INDEED recovering from it. At the time this article was written, there are seventeen million cases worldwide of clinically diagnosed coronavirus patients, and over ten million have recovered. That doesn’t mean we have a tragic loss of people – over six hundred thousand to be exact, but there are many, MANY more people recovering than are losing this battle. Our exposure chances are high, but our recovery chances are just as high when dealing with COVID-19. If people take proper protective measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, we will eventually contain this pandemic and get back to what we used to call normal in our society.

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