WHAT IS COVID-19?
Covid-19 is a disorder of the respiratory system caused by SARS-CoV-2, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).which can cause mild to severe respiratory illness or death; it also affects the upper respiratory tract and lower respiratory tract (windpipe and lungs).
Coronavirus a family of virus that causes infection in the sinuses, nose and upper throat, it can also cause respiratory illness such as common cold, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). It is called “corona” because of crown-like spikes on the surface of the virus. The virus affects the epithelium of the nasopharynx of the respiratory tract.
SARS-CoV-2 is a new strain of corona virus that was first reported in Wuhan china, December (2019), since then coronavirus was declared as a pandemic in March 2020 by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The incubation period for coronavirus is somewhere between 2 and 14 days after exposure to the virus, in which the person starts showing symptoms within the period of incubation. Some people can be asymptomatic and still spread the virus to other people.
Diagram of Coronavirus
MODE OF TRANSMISSION
Covid-19 can be spread through the following means which are listed below:
- Droplets: the virus can be transferred if an infected person talks or cough in the air without a barrier and a non-infected person breathe in the contaminated air that contains the virus then causes the infection.
- Having the small droplets and particles that contain virus land on the eyes, nose, or mouth, especially through splashes and sprays like a cough or sneeze.
- Contact: this happens when a non-infected touch a surface(chair, table and rails), which an infected person has come in contact with, the infected person sneezes or coughs in the hand causing the virus to stay on the hand and infecting people they come across with through shaking an hand contact.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19
The typical sign and symptoms of COVID-19 are listed in order of priority below:
- Sore throat
- Dry cough
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Loss of smell(anosmia)
- Loss of taste (ageusia)
- Chest pain
- Muscle pain
- Shortness of breath
WHO ARE THE PEOPLE AT RISK OF HAVING COVID-19?
- Adults who are 65 years and older are at high risk of getting infected
- People with underlying medical condition like diabetes, hypertension, chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), heart failure or coronary artery disease and sickle cell disease.
- Individuals who are immune compromised or have diseases that affects the immune system greatly like HIV/AIDS
PREVENTION OF COVID-19
Covid-19 can be prevented through the following ways
- Ensure you always wear your mask that comfortably covers your nose and mouth when you won’t be indoors, to prevent inhalation of infected air that has particles of the virus.
- Ensure the 6ft space is maintained when in gathering to prevent getting infected by droplets.
- Ensure that hand washing is done every time you get in contact with people, before touching your face, mouth, or eyes. Use soap and water and wash for at least 20 seconds, if soap and water is not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
- Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces to prevent getting infected.
- Take the vaccine available for Covid 19 to reduce your risk of getting infected. Covid-19 vaccines are safe, effective, and free!
- Ensure you seek emergency medical care if you develop severe symptoms, such as trouble breathing, chest pain, confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, or pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone.
HOW IS COVID-19 IS DIAGNOSED?
Covid-19 is diagnosed by laboratory test, which the medical personnel collects a sample of the saliva or swab your nose or throat to send for testing.
TREATMENT OF COVID-19
There is no specific treatment for Covid-19, it is recommended that people with mild case needs care to ease their symptoms, like rest, fluids, and fever control; it is advisable to take over-the-counter medicine like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), for sore throat, body aches, and fever.
COMPLICATIONS OF COVID-19
The complication that occurs is caused by a condition known as cytokine release syndrome or a cytokine storm, which is when an infection triggers your immune system to flood your bloodstream with inflammatory proteins called cytokine. This causes tissue and organs damage, in some cases lung transplant is needed.
- Respiratory failure
- Heart problem
- Liver problems
- Septic shock