Coronavirus Disease, also known as COVID-19, is affecting people worldwide, including many families in Virginia, as the virus continues to turn up in growing numbers of populations. At New Smiles Dental we are doing our part to help flatten the curve by temporarily closing our office to practice social distancing. Below is information about COVID-19, what is being done to prevent it from spreading further and how you can protect yourself from the possibility of catching it.

 

What is Coronavirus Disease? 

Coronavirus Disease is a virus that can affect both humans and animals, causing respiratory symptoms as mild as the common cold and as extreme as pneumonia. Rarely do animal coronaviruses infect and then spread among humans. You may recall the 2002-03 SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), an example of a coronavirus that moved from animals to humans. In 2012, another famous, more recent coronavirus strain named MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) appeared in the Middle East, and scientists believe that it originally spread from a camel to humans.

 

Should I be worried? 

Not necessarily. The vast majority of symptoms of coronavirus would be equivalent to being told you have a common cold or flu. Bear in mind that the term ‘coronavirus’ covers a whole family of viruses. If you think you might have had a coronavirus infection, contact your healthcare provider. They’ll inquire about your symptoms and recent travel, and prescribe what steps to take next.

 

How does the virus spread?

The virus commonly spreads among people by coughing and sneezing, close contact with an infected person, or touching an infected surface and then mouth, nose, or eyes.

 

How can people help prevent the spread of the disease? 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises healthy habits, including regular washing of hands, staying hydrated, coughing into one’s arm or tissue, and staying home if you feel sick. Furthermore, even though you are not sick, it is suggested that you stay at home unless it is for essentials (groceries, medication, etc) and practice social isolation (staying at least six feet away from others).

 

What are the symptoms? 

The CDC states that novel coronavirus signs include “fever and signs of lower respiratory disease (e.g., cough, trouble breathing).” Prevent contact with anyone suspected of having the virus.

 

Is COVID-19 treatable? 

There is no antidote and antibiotics won’t work because it is a virus. The health care providers usually treat the symptoms and make the patient more comfortable without any particular treatment available.

 

What signs should cause people to seek medical attention? 

If you or your child develops a fever, cough, or has difficulty breathing, seek urgent medical attention. If you think it is COVID-19, contact the doctor or emergency room before your appointment, and if you have it, the hospital will help make sure you don’t expose someone else to the virus.

 

Where can the most up-to-date information be found? 

The situation is likely to continue changing as more information and facts about the new virus emerge. For the most current information, visit the CDC website.