Covid Advice #2 (04/06/2020):
Why So Strict?
More Prevention Measures
Why So Strict?
More Prevention Measures
- from Dr. Dennis Fong -
I got some questions about my letter last night, so here are some answers.
Why so much stricter than what's on TV?
Because this virus is just exploding around us, with 120,000+ U.S. cases on Saturday March 28 then 1 week later it was already 300,000 - just about tripled. So first, there must be a lot of spread by people who appear to be healthy but who are actually infected, and second, we must not be doing enough to keep from catching that spread. That's why we need to be much stricter and act as if all other people and everything touched by other people are infected.
Besides the prevention mesures you listed last night, anything else we can do to prevent Covid?
I can think of a few other things.
Every day, kill any Covid that might have gotten inside you. When Covid gets inside you, it is first stopped by your throat for a few days before it can penetrate into your respiratory system. You usually feel nothing at this stage, but some people do feel a sore throat. Here, Covid can be killed by very simple measures. Gargling with Listerine 2-3 times a day will prevent Covid that gets to you but is still stuck in your throat. If you can't stand Listerine you may gargle with something acidy like vinegar. Also, drinking something warm every few hours will wash any throat Covid into your stomach where the stomach acid will kill it. (Note: Don't overdrink; your brain may swell. Persons over 70 or with kidney disease, depending on body size, should not drink more than a total of 11 to 13 eight ounce cups of liquids a day.)
Stick to a water-based, wet heat cooking diet. Eat only boiled, steamed, microwaved (microwaving just boils the water inside the food), or the insides of roasted or baked foods (the outside is dry heat cooked but the inside is steamed). Anything that is dry heat cooked, like grilled, BBQ'ed, fried, sauteed, deep fried, or the outsides of roasted or baked foods, have "advanced glycation end products" that cause inflammation in the respiratory system. That means inflammation in the nose, throat and lungs. Covid attacks the respiratory system, so it only makes sense to not cause inflammation in the respiratory system in the first place.
Keep your immunity up by getting enough rest, sleep, relaxation, happiness, exercise, fresh air and being outside in the daylight.
A couple of words about fresh air and being outside: stay at home yes, but you can still go out in your backyard or porch. Walking I would wear a mask, running I would go slow enough that I can wear one, or I would run 5:30 or 6:00 am when there's no one else on the streets. Both walking and running I would stick to streets that I can cross when I see oncoming people (wave too of course), and I would avoid trails because you can't get that far apart from oncoming people.
How do I know I have Covid?
When you get Covid, for up to the first 14 days even though you are quite contagious you have no symptoms. When you do get symptoms, in the 80% of the cases that stay mild and in the first stages of the 20% that eventually become severe, the symptoms are indistinuishable from most any virus and most any respiratory infection. You get a sore throat, a fever, a cough, diarrhea, tiredness, or a combination of those. So it's very hard to tell without a Covid test. When you are in the severe stage, then we can tell by the pattern of the pneumonia on the chest X-ray or CT scan. To prove it's Covid, however, we still have to do a Covid test, which can take days to get results.
So if I have a sore throat, fever, or cough, what should I do? Go to the hospital and get tested?
No, call the doctor or have the doctor see you virtually first, unless you are really sick and you think it might be a life-threatening emergency. Why? Because we don't have enough test kits, and so we don't do what some of the Asian countries do, which is to test everyone with respiratory disease. Then of those who test positive, have public health trace and test all their contacts, that is, those who have contact <6 feet, >10 minutes, or got coughed or sneezed on. Then, of those who test positive here, again trace and test all their contacts. Then of the positive ones of those, again trace and again test all their contacts, and on and on until purblic health has tracked down and quarantined every single contact of every single person who tests positive. That is called eradicating disease, and a more humble term is "containment." We don't do that; we only do treating the ill. We only test those who are sick enough, and those who are not sick enough but who have respiratory infections and therefore could have Covid, we just tell them to go home, isolate themselves and rest, drink fluids, etc., just like for a flu. So if you go down to the hospital when you have a respiratory infection but you are not that sick, you might not get tested, yet you will risk being exposed to Covid or things like pneumonia just being in the emergency room. So call the doctor or have the doctor see you virtually first.
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