Information about COVID-19 or coronavirus seems to be all over the news these days. The government is recommending that Canadians practice “social distancing measures”, which means that people should stay home and avoid contact with one another. Events have been cancelled, schools and daycares have been closed, and the daily routines in workplaces are changing. These changes can be really scary, confusing, frustrating, and/or overwhelming. Here are some tips to help you:

Protect yourself
There are a number of things that you can do to prevent yourself from getting the virus and transmitting it to other people.

  • Wash your hands: Wash your hands carefully with soap and water for 20 seconds. You can also clean your hands using an alcohol-based disinfectant. You should wash your hands after:
    – coughing or sneezing;
    – when caring for people who are sick;
    – before, during, and after you prepare food;
    – before eating;
    – after using the washroom;
    – when your hands are visibly dirty; and
    – after handling animals or animal waste.
  • Avoid touching your face: The virus can spread if you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth after touching a surface that may be infected (e.g., with the virus on it). Wash your hands frequently and limit the number of times that you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Frequently clean surfaces: Depending on the environment, COVID-19 can stay on surfaces for up to several days. The virus can spread if you touch your nose, mouth, or eyes right after touching an infected surface. Disinfect, or clean, commonly touched items such as toys, phones, toilets, electronics, and door handles using household cleaners.
  • Catch your cough: Cough and sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, not your hand. Throw out your tissue in the garbage immediately afterwards and wash your hands.
  • Practice social distancing: Avoid contact with other individuals wherever possible to limit the spread of the virus. Maintain a space of at least six feet or more between yourself and others. Stay home whenever possible.
  • Don’t share items: Avoid sharing items that other individuals may have touched or used, like cups, utensils, toothbrushes, and towels.

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