We know you have heard “STAY HOME!” countless times by news, local or national politicians, and even your physicians. The MileStone Academy team is a here to remind you to continue social distancing, as well as, why it is so important. Many of us have never experienced a pandemic. Before February 2020, others did not know that a pandemic is a global outbreak of disease or virus. Therefore, it is understandable why our communities, our neighbors and most importantly, our youth do not understand the dire need to faithfully practice social distancing during this time.
What is Coronavirus-19?
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus found during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China.
How does COVID-19 Spread?
The virus spreads between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It also may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads. Learn what is known about the spread of newly emerged coronaviruses here.
What is Social Distancing?
The CDC defines Social distancing, also called “physical distancing,” as keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home. To practice social or physical distancing:
- Stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) from other people
- Do not gather in groups
- Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings
- In addition to everyday steps to prevent COVID-19, keeping space between you and others is one of the best tools we have to avoid being exposed to this virus and slowing its spread locally and across the country and world.
When COVID-19 is spreading in your area, everyone should limit close contact with individuals outside your household in indoor and outdoor spaces. Since people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, it is important to stay away from others when possible, even if you have no symptoms. Social distancing is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
What is the Difference Between Quarantine and Social Distancing?
Social distancing and quarantine both mean you have no contact with the public. However, quarantine is the term used for those who were exposed to a person with COVID-19 but have yet to receive a test or positive results. The CDC highly suggests these people to stay away from others for 14 days or longer, to make sure they do not spread the virus during this “pre-illness” or incubation period. On the other hand, social distancing separates sick people from healthy people. People who are in isolation should stay home. In the home, anyone sick should separate themselves from others by staying in a specific “sick” bedroom or space and using a different bathroom (if possible).
Tips for social distancing
- Follow guidance from authorities where you live.
- If you need to shop for food or medicine at the grocery store or pharmacy, stay at least 6 feet away from others.
- Use mail-order for medications, if possible.
- Consider a grocery delivery or order ahead pick up service.
- ALWAYS cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others, including when you must go out in public, for example to the grocery store.
- Stay at least 6 feet between yourself and others, even when you wear a face covering.
- Avoid all large and small gatherings in private places and public spaces, such a friend’s house, parks, restaurants, shops, or any other place. This advice applies to people of any age, including teens and younger adults. Children should not have in-person playdates while school is out. To help support social connections while social distancing, learn tips to keep children healthy while school is out.
- Work from home when possible.
- If possible, avoid using public transportation, ridesharing, or taxis.
- If you are a student or parent, talk to your school about options for digital/distance learning. To learn more about MileStone Academy’s program, contact Michele Hewitt-Webster.
- Stay connected while staying away. It is very important to stay in touch with friends and family that do not live in your home. Call, video chat, or stay connected using social media. Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Read tips for stress and coping.