What is quarantine, how effective is mouth-to-nose protection, what disinfection measures are useful?
Hygiene expert Dr. med. Susanne Wenner-Ziegler explains in an understandable way what protective measures are available and how they work.
Who has to be in quarantine for 14 days, what does quarantine mean and how do I behave correctly??
In some cases, the health department or the doctor or even the health department will say these people need to be quarantined. What does this actually mean?
Going into quarantine means retreating into your home environment, avoiding social contact, and not going outside. The goal is, for example, to avoid infecting someone who is particularly at risk .
People who have had contact with a coronavirus-infected patient, who are supposed to be quarantined, and people who have been in a risk area in the last few days.
Which disinfection measures are useful and why?
Disinfection measures related to COVID disease are very very important, especially in health care facilities. There we are especially urged to avoid spreading the virus to other otherwise ill patients. In the home environment, we assume that good adherence to normal hygiene with more intensive hand washing and good normal cleaning at home is perfectly adequate.
Of course, you may be out and about where you don’t have the opportunity to wash your hands with soap and water and reach for an alcohol-based hand sanitizer there instead.
Do mouthguards and gloves help??
People who do not have respiratory symptoms are not specially protected by mouth-to-nose protection or a respirator mask. We protect ourselves in the hospital to eliminate or contain the spread of the virus in any case, and we also use gloves and disinfectants in the hospital. All these things you do not need in daily life.
On the contrary, the use of gloves, for example, which we also experience to some extent in the hospital, can convey a false sense of security. If you always wear gloves and always touch everything and touch your lips or nose with gloves on, it does not mean that you are protected, but rather that pathogens stick to the material of the gloves much more easily and you feel that you do not have to wash your hands at all.
Why you should avoid social contact so much?
In the current situation, many people do not understand why they should limit social contacts. Especially if they themselves are young and under the impression that the virus can’t really hurt them after all.
However, the current situation in Germany and many other countries is such that we are trying to keep the number of infected people as low as possible or. To keep the increase of infected patients as flat as possible, so that we can always take good care of them in our health care systems and not become overburdened.
For this it is necessary that we contain contacts, even if we think that the other person is certainly not ill. Because my counterpart could be in the so-called incubation period and infect me, although I do not even notice that the other is sick.
What does it mean that the Robert Koch Institute now classifies the health risk in Germany as "high"?
The Robert Koch Institute has, of course, been monitoring very closely and on a daily basis for weeks and months how the incidence of infection is playing out in Germany. Currently, it has estimated the risk for the German population as high, because we have just now in many places in Germany different infection events.
We observe that in other countries there is also an accumulation of seriously ill people and we know that the German health care system is now very strained.
All this together makes a risk assessment, which is currently higher than two weeks ago.