OMICRON: Fighting another wave

OMICRON
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The Omicron variant of the Coronavirus has shook the country, bringing another wave of problems and complications to deal with. The virus seems to be spreading like rampant fire with almost one lakh cases being reported everyday. Many people point out the fact that even though the number of cases are increasing, the severity seems to be lesser than the last two waves. The number of hospitalizations are far lesser and the need of oxygen cylinders is also considerably low. However, many scientists also claim that even though its impact is less severe, it shouldn’t be taken lightly. We do not know the long term impact of the same. Being careful also makes sense, because even if we do not get it, what if we transmit it to the sensitive generations around us, which includes parents or grandparents above 60 or children below the age of 10. 

On one hand while the number of cases are rapidly increasing, we can see that we have reached the 150 crore vaccination mark, which is an achievement by itself and we have also started vaccinations for teenagers below 18 years too. Hence, as responsible citizens we must ensure that our family members and friends are vaccinated. Let us also urge all the people we know to complete their vaccinations if they already haven’t done it. 

However, in the light of events that are happening we must remember our basic precautions. 

  1. Wear your mask 

This habit can not be forgotten, at least in the near future. What you have to remember here is that you have to wear an N95 mask or at least 2 regular masks to keep yourself safe. Wear it everywhere you go. Do not keep it under the chin or remove it when you are in somebody else’s house, because you are still exposed to the virus. If you are somebody who has to physically report to the office everyday, then ensure that your mask is on throughout the day. The masks should also be replaced from time to time, not all the masks are reusable and so reusing a mask that is not effective is not going to serve the purpose. Hence wear your masks properly and step outside your home. Some of them think it is safe to not wear your mask if you are just walking the corridor of your apartment or in front of your home. This is not a correct assumption, anybody in your locality could be a carrier and so please wear your mask throughout. You can buy these extensions that you can put around your neck, that way your mask is always with you. 

  1. Maintain Social Distancing

We keep hearing public service announcements in the radio, tv and in public areas saying maintain social distance, the do gaz ki doori. This is very important. We all have to leave our homes for certain things, it could be for work, for purchasing essentials, hospital check ups or bank work, withdrawing money etc. It could be anything. We have to learn to maintain basic distance. If it can reduce the risk of getting the virus then why shouldn’t we do it. Avoid going to any public occasions, like meetings or weddings, they can increase the possibility of contracting the virus. Social distancing should also be maintained indoors, if we are meeting people at their homes than ensure that the chairs are placed at a considerable distance from each other. If you are going out everyday for work, then make it a point to not be in close proximity to the elders of the house. 

  1. Monitoring 

Monitoring is as important as the other precautions. Nobody likes to deal with a problem, but to be deluded is not correct and it can delay treatment. Keep faith and be optimistic and you can face any challenge. Monitor your oxygen levels with the help of a pulse oximeter. By now we all know that it should be less than 95. Anything lesser than 95 needs medical attention and treatment. Even if all of you feel healthy, just keep checking your oxygen levels. Look out for symptoms if any and if you feel any kind of unrest immediately visit a doctor. To know what these symptoms could be please check government websites and health related websites that are credible. Do not read or trust unnamed sources and panic. Monitoring brings in a lot of difference, it helps in early identification and treatment.

  1. Sanitization 

Sanitizer is a boon in these trying times. Santise as often as you can. Carry a pocket sanitizer, keep a sanitizer bottle at the entrance of your homes. Pour a few drops of dettol in the water you bathe in. This helps in killing any form of germs that might have. High touch surfaces like door knobs, tables, chairs, computers/laptops, ATM machines etc carry maximum amount of germs. Sanitize your hand after touching these high touch surfaces. Also, sanitizer sprays are available in the market, so use them at all appropriate places. Even if you receive food packages, take the food out, sanitize your hands and then eat.

  1. Diet and Inputs 

Many Doctors suggest vitamins and other essential tablets that can help build and boost immunity. However, this has to be prescribed from doctors who have studied your body and its comorbidities if any and then the right medication is to be suggested. So many videos, posts on many social media platforms suggest a plethora of things, from inhaling steam regularly to eating good food to taking a lot of home made remedies like kada or haldi doodh and so on and so forth. Many of these might be harmless, still over doing something without taking advice from a nutritionist, dietician or a doctor can lead to unnecessary problems. So, do not overdo anything and as long as you are careful you are fine.

At the end of the day, what is important is that all of us are healthy, patient and sensible beings who need to sail through the pandemic smoothly. This would also mean being compassionate towards the people who are being affected by the virus, help them in every little way you can and we will all slowly but surely come out of this with faith and patience. 

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