7 Best Practices for Protecting Your Health in Public

food health face mask coronavirus covid-19

Given these uncertain times, taking the right health and safety precautions is more essential than ever. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about numerous challenges that we need to face head-on as we adopt measures amidst the new normal. From observing social distancing to wearing antimicrobial face mask, there are several things you can do to prioritize your health. 

Wear the Right Face Mask Properly

When choosing a face mask, there are several factors you should consider. Proper fit comes first and foremost when purchasing a mask. Make sure it covers both your nose and mouth and fits snugly, while still giving you room to breathe. It should stay on without you constantly having to adjust it. Look for a mask with at least a 2-layer construction. This helps reduce the chance of droplets passing through from either side. 

If you can, consider double masking as well. Using a surgical mask in parallel with a cloth mask, heightens your protection, especially when setting foot in public places. Lastly, make sure to wear a new and clean mask every day. Surgical masks can be disposed of at the end of the day, while cloth masks can be thrown in the laundry and washed thoroughly before the next use. Remember that when it comes to mask wearing, it’s a step we can all take to protect ourselves and others. 

Avoid Crowds as Much as Possible

While social distancing has become the norm, it’s more strictly implemented in some places as compared to others. If you have to head to work or do some errands, do your part to stray away from crowds. Two meters is the recommended distance to keep from others. Having several people at close contact is a sure way to expose yourself and many others to risks that could otherwise be avoided.  

Observe Proper Hand Hygiene

Frequent hand washing is the key to keeping viruses and bacteria away. Wash your hands thoroughly before putting on your mask, as well as touching your face. When removing your mask, take it from the straps and do not touch the front part which may have been contaminated as you went through your day. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth as much as possible as well. 

If handwashing is not an immediate option, you can use alcohol or hand sanitizer instead. Many stores have implemented dispensers at store entrances, so take advantage of this. It would be wise to carry a small bottle with you wherever you go as well just to be prepared. 

Avoid Direct Contact with Objects and Surfaces Used By Other People

If you can forego touching things in public spaces, you really should. This includes the rails of stairwells, elevator buttons, and other frequently touched items. For elevators, use your keys when heading in or out of one so that you don’t have to touch the buttons with your own fingers. If contact can’t be avoided, then make sure to properly sanitize before and after. This includes personal items that others may have touched, such as your smartphone. Make sure to wipe these items down with disinfectant to reduce your risk. 

When Dining in a Restaurant, Choose to Sit Outdoors

If things have opened up in your city, it’s understandable that you’d want some sense of normalcy by being able to dine out again. If you do decide to do so, ask to sit out on the terrace if that’s an option. When you have to remove your mask, it’s preferable to be in an open space as compared to a confined area with the air conditioning circulating. The risk of you catching something is higher if the space is not well ventilated. 

Limit the People You Interact with on a Regular Basis  

This can be a challenge, especially if you’re an extroverted person, but it is another thing you can do to minimize your exposure. By identifying members of your circle and sticking to those few people, it then becomes easier to trace and address exposures immediately should anyone prove to have been exposed to the virus. If online meetings or catch ups are an option, opt for those versus meeting in person. It may not be the same, but until one is fully vaccinated, this is probably the safer choice. 

Stay Up to Date on the Latest Regulations from Local and National Authorities

When it comes to new measures and the latest updates, make sure you get them from verified sources. Given how the pandemic has affected everyone, be wary of fake news and conflicting statements from dubious sources. Refer to the health authorities in your city or recognized international bodies such as the WHO for official statements on what new protocols are being recommended. 

When it comes to putting your safety first, don’t take any chances. As the saying goes, “health is wealth,” so do your part to protect yours.