By now, we all are aware of the dreadful impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. Along with leaving most of us feeling devastated, in both physical and mental ways, COVID-19 has also created an abundance of rumours, busts, myths and false claims due to various assumptions as well as misconceptions but how factual those rumors are, and whether we should believe the assumptions, are up for debate.
All around the world, there are plenty of news sites spreading false claims from unverified sources about the coronavirus, influencing many people’s beliefs and state of mind. It is no different in Nepal. Here are some widely circulated rumors and misinformation about the coronavirus, and why they are not true.
Masks always protect and shield against COVID-19
While disposable and cloth masks can protect against droplets, neither can protect against aerosolized particles. Surgical masks or N95 respirators provide greater protection as they are made from a minimum of three layers of synthetic non-woven materials, and configured to have filtration layers sandwiched in the middle. These masks have various levels of fluid-resistance and prevent respiratory droplets from spreading to others, and vice versa.
Children and youth cannot contract COVID-19
The coronavirus affects people of all ages. Preliminary evidence suggests that children are just as likely to contract it, although their symptoms tend to be less severe. However, many cases of children as well as youth being infected by the virus have been reported.
COVID-19 cannot be transmitted in hot and humid climates
The coronavirus can be transmitted in any climate, as climate has no profound role in the transmission of the virus. The only way to stop spreading it is by maintaining a distance of one metre and cleaning hands frequently. Corona virus originated in a Chinese lab and outbreak occurred after having bat soup
Researchers believe that this virus may have jumped from pangolins to humans and is a natural product of evolution. Scientists are confident that the virus first showed up in animals.
One has to be in the proximity of someone else for at least 20 to 25 minutes to catch the virus
The longer a person is in the proximity of someone already infected, the more likely they are to catch the virus. However, this does not mean that the severity is less in those who have been around infected ones for a while. It is possible to catch the virus in under 10 minutes.
Home remedies can cure and protect against COVID-19
No home remedies can protect against COVID-19; essential oils, silver colloid, sesame oil, garlic, lemon, burning sage, etc. Although home remedies are always beneficial for developing strong immunity, there has not been any evidence of them working to cure or stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Antibiotics are effective in preventing and treating COVID-19
Antibiotics are used to fight bacteria. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), using antibiotics for the treatment of coronavirus has no factual evidence. However, if one is hospitalized due to the virus, they may receive antibiotics due to the possibility of bacterial coinfection.
The recovery chances after being infected from COVID-19 are minimal
This assumption, probably the most dangerous one, has affected the mental states of people by causing them to believe that life will never again be normal after being infected by the coronavirus. However, the fact is that more than 89 percent of people have already recovered from this virus.
Alcohol consumption can decrease the chance of being infected from COVID-19
Although methanol and ethanol are used as sanitizers to kill the virus on surfaces, the same method cannot be used to fight against the virus inside the body. Doing so can severely harm the body’s internal organs and mucinous membranes such as the mouth and eyes.
One is COVID-19 negative if they are able to hold their breath for ten seconds or longer
Although the most common symptoms of the coronavirus are fever, dry cough and tiredness, some people can be asymptomatic. The only reliable and best way to confirm infection is by taking a PCR test.
In the end, the most important thing that one can do is to follow all necessary precautions provided by WHO guidelines, and be aware of facts rather than inaccurate and baseless rumours. It is everyone’s responsibility to spread facts about the coronavirus. In addition, the fear of and hatred for COVID patients has led to a large number of suicides.
Mental health stability is important, especially for those battling against the virus and who need the emotional support to recover fast .So, lets spread positivity and motivate each other to tackle and conquer over this virus emotionally as well.And believe only authorized source informations regarding corona virus.
Prakriti Chand is a seventh semester student at the Himalayan college of agricultural sciences and technology (HICAST).