Everyday Habits to Avoid if You Don't Want COVID
COVID fatigue is real, and has been a phenomenon for a while, compounded with the disappointment that the Delta variant has made this summer less normal than expected. But now isn't the time to let good protective habits slide. There are things you can do to seriously reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19, or of developing severe illness. Start by avoiding these everyday habits. Read on to find out more—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You Have "Long" COVID and May Not Even Know It.
Don't Stay Unvaccinated
The best way to avoid becoming seriously ill or dying from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated. Period. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that the vaccines are still highly effective against hospitalization, even amid the highly contagious Delta variant. CNN reported this week that unpublished CDC data shows vaccine effectiveness against hospitalization at 94% or higher in adults 18 to 74.
Don't Forget to Wear a Mask
In July 2021, the CDC advised all people, regardless of their vaccination status, to wear face masks in public indoor places, in areas with substantial or high transmission of the virus. The CDC has long advised that unvaccinated people mask up indoors. They also advise anyone who's at increased risk to mask indoors, regardless of the level of community transmission.
It Really Does Help to Social Distance
"Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread virus," says the CDC. "Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arm lengths) from other people" outside your home. This is especially important for people who are at increased risk of severe illness, such as the immunocompromised.
Avoid Crowded Indoor Spaces
The coronavirus spreads most efficiently in crowded indoor settings. If you're attending events maskless in crowded spaces that are poorly ventilated, you're putting yourself at increased risk for COVID. The virus spreads less well outdoors, but experts say you may want to wear a face mask in crowded outdoor settings where social distancing isn't possible.
Avoid Touching Your Face
Although contracting the coronavvirus from surfaces (fomite transmission) is much less common than breathing it in, you can still expose yourself to the virus (not to mention other germs) if it's on your hands and you touch your eyes, mouth or nose. Experts still recommend washing your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water isn't available, use hand sanitizer that's at least 60% alcohol. And to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.