Bella Family Patients,
With the media attention on Coronavirus (COVID-19) I wanted to take time to reassure all of you that our clinic is safe, and we are cleaning after each visit in the exam rooms. We are assessing the risk of every patient coming into the clinic for their visits.
I want you to know that the media attention on this is extreme and I would recommend you turn off the television and take time away from Facebook or Instagram. It is healthy for your mental health to do this. There is no reason to panic or live in fear. I want my patients to feel empowered with the knowledge that I am hoping you will share with family, friends, neighbors and the community.
Symptoms of COVID-19 are the same as Influenza A & B which can be tricky to differentiate but there are some obvious differences. COVID-19 has symptoms of cough, fever, shortness of breath so the symptoms are more localized to the chest. Influenza A & B symptoms are headache, stuffy/runny nose, body aches, cough, fever/chills, and sore throat. It is important to be aware of symptoms but please do not let them cause you fear, panic or take over your life/home.
Many people die of influenza every year! Many people die of Viral Pneumonia every year! It is no different with COVID-19. Viruses can replicate and be violent in our system but if we are living our healthiest that we can possibly be then we will be just fine. Those at risk, and I mean high risk are:
- Uncontrolled Chronic Conditions (High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Autoimmune Disorders, Asthma/COPD)
- Cancer Treatment Patients
- Long-Term Immunocompromised Medications (Prednisone, Cellcept, Plaquenil, Methotrexate)
Exposure can be tricky as symptoms can take 2-14 days to appear as it takes the virus replicated to affect our systems and can be quicker with some and longer for others. That is why your vigilance should be with hygiene. Wash those hands after you touch ANYTHING and EVERYTHING out in the community. Think about a trip to the grocery store. You grab a cart and start through the store picking up items and putting them down, placing items in your cart. Your cell phone rings, and you pick it up to answer the call and press on the screen that you know put up to your face by your mouth, nose, and eyes (the gateway into our bodies). Then something itches on your face and you scratch that area of your face and then go back to placing things in your cart. Then you check out at the register and either touching cash that MILLIONS have already touched or using the debit/credit machine that many have used. Then you go back to your car and open the car door with your hands that have touched everything in the store and then drive home with your hands on the steering wheel. Then you get home to your sanctuary and everything you touch and then there you go again touching your face and getting that piece of hair out of your mouth or eyes. Can you see how quickly this all can happen?
There are studies out there that have found on average we touch our faces 23 times an hour!! Forty-four percent of those touch their mouth, nose or eyes….. The gateway to our system!!! When you cough for ANY reason the best course is a tissue if available then immediately throw that away. The other is in the inner flexed portion of your elbow. Never in your hands if avoidable and if you do wash them or hand sanitizer.
My Bella Family, I want to STRESS the importance of preventative care. That is how we can prevent and avoid chronic diseases and conditions. As your Primary Care Provider, we will continue to collaborate on your overall health and your health goals. If you are eating a balanced nutrition, being active, sleeping 8+ hours a night and drinking plenty of water you are doing great and keep it up. If you have not started those 4 things, I urge you to start. You will find that you are rarely sick or lacking energy if you are living your healthiest. If you have any concerns or questions, please reach out through the portal or call. We are here to help any way we can.
Sue Jardine APRN, MSN, CFNP