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Protecting Yourself from Coronavirus – COVID-19

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Ohio U chapter.

If you have been on any social media platform in the last few weeks, you have seen something about the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19). There is a ton of information being spread around, so please take the time to educate yourself on the factual information. Part of educating yourself on what is happening right now is learning how to protect yourself. This can also help in slowing the spread of the disease and protecting the at-risk members of our community. 

That being said, control what you can control. Not all schools, events, or businesses are taking preventative measures for this disease, but there are things you can still do right now to protect yourself and the people around you. 

Wash your hands!

This one is easy for most as we already do it multiple times throughout the day. All-day long we collect bacteria through the objects and people we touch. Washing your hands will kill any virus and bacteria that may be lurking on your hands. This is also a great way to avoid spreading it to other people and the objects you touch.

Keep your distance

I know we have important things to do, but do what you can to stay home. Not everyone can take paid leave, which is a problem in itself, but for now, do what you can to avoid others. Being around people increases the chance of spreading the virus. Do yourself a favor and cancel social outings, plan phone calls instead of in-person meetings, and work from home if you are able to. 

Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth

This is a hard one for many because you don’t even notice when you’re touching your face. Breaking the habit of touching your face is a good thing anyway, so now is a great time to start! The reason experts recommend you don’t touch your face is that if you have any viruses on your hands and then touch your eyes, nose, or mouth you can contaminate those areas of your face. Once contaminated, the virus can enter your body from those points and spread quickly. 

Cover your mouth

This goes back to elementary school and is another great habit to always practice. If you are going to cough or sneeze please cover your face! When you cough or sneeze you spread droplets into the air and potentially pass germs onto others. Another option if you are worried about your clothes is to cough into a tissue. After you use that tissue once it needs to be thrown out right away. Do those around you a favor and wash your hands after you find yourself coughing and sneezing.

Clean frequently touched surfaces

Doorknobs and light switches are often overlooked during your routine cleaning. Yet, those are places that are touched by multiple people, many times in a day. Just as you should be washing your hands more often, take the time to clean these areas of your home more often. Lysol and Clorox are good options for disinfecting. If you are like me and prefer natural products or your stores are low on stock for Lysol and Clorox, you can use a 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water to disinfect. Another object that people forget to clean consistently is phones! They are constantly in our hands, in friends’ hands, on desks, and dropped onto dirty floors. It is a great idea to clean your phone off when you can. 

two phones lying flat and plugged in
Steve Johnson on Unsplash

Check your facts

Since the virus is new, there is more information flooding our media platforms every day. Sometimes messages get mixed in translation or people with good hearts don’t have the qualifications to be sharing information. That being said, double-check your facts any time you aren’t sure about the source. One major downfall of media providers and social media platforms today is that information can be biased or incorrect and the consumer has no way of knowing unless they do outside research. 

This is a problem often seen in the older generations, who still get a large portion of their information from TV news and Facebook. Yet, it is also seen in young consumers as Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, and other platforms can easily share false information that we spread further. As many know, the media is able to decide what you have access to, so be careful about getting all your information from one source. What you can do to prevent misinformation is to double-check any facts, do extra research, and look for information from the experts. 

Don’t spread false information

This one is not about protecting yourself but will help protect those around you. As stated earlier, not all information we see is factually accurate. During a stressful time like we are seeing now, people are more willing to share information they see on their social media platforms. This is fantastic if the information is true and will benefit others. Yet, when the information is false it can provide false hope and resources, and even lead consumers to change their behavior in a potentially dangerous way. 

If you see things on social media, it is your choice whether or not to spread that information. Take an extra second to search for information in a tweet or Facebook post. Disinformation is significantly more harmful then people realize, and can cause people to believe false information that leads to changes in behavior that aren’t beneficial.

Trustworthy Sources: 

Center for Disease Control


World Health Organization


Yale Medicine


Standford Healthcare



TV and Social Media use for ages 55+ :


Baby Boomer Marketing Statistics: 


Junior at Ohio University studying Management Information Systems and Business Analytics. Member of the Select Leaders Development Program in the College of Business. I enjoy using writing as a way to express my thoughts in an informal way and to help others with the little things in life.