COVID-19 Safety Tips for People Living in Small Spaces
In South Africa, a large percentage of families live in small spaces, which makes social distancing and self-isolation hard to achieve during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, you can still practise safety in your home if you or a member of your family ends up getting COVID-19. Here are 7 tips to help you stay safe in a small space:
- Even if you all share sleeping quarters, create a comfortable area for the ill person to sleep which is at least 1.5 metres away from everyone else.
- Make sure the recovering family member has their own bedding, towels, crockery and cutlery. This is to be used by the ill person and only the ill person at all times. Wash these items separately from the rest of the household’s items.
- The recovering person must wear a mask at all times and keep spare masks, too. The worn mask must be washed, dried thoroughly and ironed after a day’s use.
- Preferably, all other members of the household should wear masks, too, if they are living in the same room as the patient. However, if this isn’t possible, then they must keep a distance of at least 1.5 metres between themselves and the patient – the caregiver must always wear a mask when caring for the patient.
- Regularly sanitise and clean all frequently touched surfaces such as counter-tops and table-tops, light and plug switches, kitchen appliances, door and window handles, keyboards, remotes and cell phones as well as shared bathrooms and toilets. Make a disinfectant by mixing 100mls of Bleach to 800mls of water. Use a clean cloth to wipe surfaces.
- All members of the household should wash their hands thoroughly (no less than 20 seconds) after going to the toilet, before preparing food, as well as before and after attending to the ill person. Wash your hands more frequently if possible.
- Make sure the ill person and everyone in the household gets into a good habit of always coughing and sneezing into the crook of their elbow even though they are wearing a mask. Open doors and windows to get air flowing through your living quarters as much as possible (obviously not for long on colder days).
While you are attending to a loved one with COVID-19, remember to remain calm and provide all the love and care they need to heal. Contact the doctor if you are concerned about the symptoms or feel the patient isn’t getting well.
Disclaimer: Any information contained here is merely a guideline. Always visit your healthcare practitioner for any health-related advice or diagnosis.