The COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it an immense amount of uncertainty and worry. It is no surprise that this has led to widespread misinformation, and false assumptions about the novel coronavirus. With many news outlets and other forms of media often saying different things, it is easy to get caught up in false claims that only make the worrying worse. It is important to stay informed about the current situation in order to keep yourself and those around you as healthy, safe, and reassured as possible. Here are a few of the most common myths about COVID-19, and the truth behind them.
Antibiotics can treat COVID-19
COVID-19 is caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2. Antibiotics are only effective in treating infections caused by bacteria, and therefore, antibiotics will not treat COVID-19. It is possible, however, that people suffering from COVID-19 will develop a bacterial infection as a complication due to a weakened immune system. If this occurs, antibiotics may be administered to treat the bacterial infection. It is very important not to take antibiotics unless completely necessary. and it is crucial that the entire course be completed. The overuse and misuse of antibiotics can contribute to them becoming ineffective and developing resistance.
Only older people and people with underlying health conditions are at risk of COVID-19 infection
Older adults and people with conditions such as diabetes, asthma, or obesity have shown to be more likely to develop severe COVID-19 symptoms or experience complications. However, this does not mean these individuals always have worse symptoms, or that those who do not fall within this category cannot become sick from COVID-19. Like any virus, SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted to anyone, and people of all age groups may experience symptoms if infected.
It has also been said that children are immune to COVID-19, and while most children who do catch COVID-19 only exhibit mild or no symptoms at all, it is possible for children to both catch and spread the virus. Everybody should continue to take the proper precautions to prevent transmission of COVID-19, including frequently washing hands, wearing a mask, and practicing social distancing.
Vitamin C supplements can prevent and cure COVID-19
There is currently no evidence to show that taking vitamin C supplements will prevent people from catching COVID-19. However, vitamin C plays an important role in the body and can contribute to healthy and normal immune functioning. Vitamin C is definitely something that should be included in your daily diet to help keep your immune system healthy, however, increasing your dosage of vitamin C will not grant you immunity to COVID-19.
It is also crucial to be aware of products being falsely advertised as treatments or cures for COVID-19. Since the start of the outbreak in the USA, the FDA has already issued at least 7 warnings to companies for falsely advertising their products under the guise of promised cures for the virus.
Always consult your doctor before taking any medications, and be wary of the information you receive online with regards to treatments and medications for disease.
COVID-19 is the same as the flu
Many of the most common symptoms associated with COVID-19 are similar to those of the flu, such as body aches, fever, and a cough. In both of these infections, individual cases can range from mild to severe to fatal. However, COVID-19 has demonstrated to be an overall more severe infection than the flu. Although more than 80% of COVID-19 cases show only mild symptoms, the estimated death rate for COVID-19 is around 0.5-1.0% which is significantly higher than that of the flu, which is about 0.1%.
While the flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, it is important to remember to get vaccinated if you usually receive the flu vaccine. This can help protect you from catching the flu, which can contribute to maintaining as healthy an immune system as possible while the pandemic remains ongoing .
Wearing a mask can cause CO2 poisoning
Wearing a medical mask or face covering can definitely take some getting used to, and initially may not feel very comfortable for some people. However, wearing masks does not cause an oxygen deficiency, or a buildup of CO2 in the body. When wearing a mask, you should ensure it has a snug fit, and completely covers both your nose and mouth, while still allowing you to breathe comfortably.
Although wearing a mask does not 100% guarantee you will not catch COVID-19, it is a practice that can greatly reduce the spread of the virus, and helps to increase the safety of yourself and those around you when out in public places, such as the grocery store.