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What to Do When Someone Turns COVID-Positive At Home?

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What to Do When Someone Turns COVID-Positive At Home?

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The COVID-19 pandemic has affected so many people, and many of them are advised to have home care. Read the article below to know more about it.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Radha Peruvemba Hariharan

Published At June 30, 2021
Reviewed AtJuly 6, 2023

Introduction:

At the time of the surge in COVID-19 cases, hospital availability and medical care becomes challenging. Doctors can ask the patient to take home care in the following situations:

  • If a person turned COVID-positive and have minor or no symptoms.

  • If a person has given a sample for COVID-19 testing and the results are declared.

  • Having symptoms associated with COVID-19 without a COVID-positive result.

It is recommended that anyone who is suspicious or has COVID should stay at home unless and until they need medical care. This will help in the limitation of the spread of infection. While staying at home, there are certain measures that you should be taking, and they are mentioned below.

What Are The Measures To Be Done At Home?

  • The person should isolate themselves or at least try keeping away from others at home or even pets.
  • Always wear a mask. Those who have breathing difficulties or children younger than 2 two years can avoid wearing a mask.
  • It is important to cover coughs and sneezes with tissue paper or the elbows. If a person uses a tissue paper, throw it right away in the dustbin and wash the hands immediately. A person should wash their hands using soap and water and scrub for at least 20 seconds. Another option is the usage of hand sanitizer, which is alcohol-based.
  • Isolation is the best option whenever possible. Also, I prefer staying in a separate bedroom and using a separate washroom.
  • Also, all the utensils should be separate, like glasses, cups, eating utensils, dishes, etc. Do not share it with other house members. Make sure that they are washed by running them through a dishwasher, or use hot soapy water to wash them.
  • The next thing is to use individual towels and bedding. Do not share these also with others.
  • If the child is very young or the person is very sick and not able to wear the mask, the caregivers who are attending to them or who are in the same room should wear masks.
  • Avoid any visitors. It includes both children and adults.
  • There should be good ventilation or airflow in the house. This can be achieved using opening the windows or turning on the air conditioner and air filters.
  • Everyone in the house needs to wash their hands quite often. They can use soap and water to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds, or alcohol-based hand sanitizers can be used.
  • While washing the clothes, towels, etc., of the affected person, it is important to wash them in extremely hot temperature water and detergent. Also, a person, can wear gloves while collecting them. After handling the laundry, wash the hands with soap and water properly.
  • The household cleaner should be used to clean the entire house every day, especially anything that gets touched more often. The toys of sick children should be kept separately.

Anyone who is affected or anyone who suspects the infection or came in contact with the infected person should isolate or quarantine themselves to prevent public transmission of the virus.

When Is The Right Time To Call The Doctor?

If anyone who is affected or a caretaker or anyone who is in the same home develops severe symptoms, contact the doctor immediately.

Special Considerations:

Apart from the above-mentioned general measures, there are certain guidelines and preventive measures for the following. (For more information, a person can visit CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] and WHO [World Health Organization] websites).

a) Babies and Children:

Children under the age of one year might have a higher risk of contracting this infection. If the child is positive for COVID or cannot be tested or has no symptoms, he or she should be discharged, and home care should be given. Baby’s caregivers should wear masks and wash their hands frequently. Avoid masks in children younger than two years due to suffocation. Frequently the child’s follow-up should be done with their physician by physical visits or phone or virtual visits for the first 14 days. Infants who are tested negative should also be sent home.

b) Pregnant Women and Lactating Mothers:

Still, there is no such evidence supporting pregnant women or lactating mothers to be at higher risk of contracting the virus. But, those pregnant women who have got infected have shown severe illness than those who did not. Also, post-pregnancy, mothers should be careful for at least 42 days from the end of pregnancy. Not many studies are available about the transmission of COVID infection from mother to child during pregnancy or breastfeeding, but a few cases have been reported post-delivery.

When tested positive, most pregnant and lactating women are sent for home care. It is advisable to take a lot of fluids and rest. Wash hands regularly with soap and water. Wear a mask even when expressing breast milk. Avoid breastfeeding during home isolation. Get a regular follow-up and get a consultation before choosing home care. In case of any emergency, get medical care immediately.

c) People With Comorbidities, Immunosuppression, Elderly, and Respiratory Disorder Patients:

Fighting with COVID for the above-mentioned patients is comparatively challenging, and they are at higher risk of contracting the infection. Keep checking the vitals, especially SpO2 and the symptoms. Continue regular medicines. A person can take over-the-counter medicines only after a prescription by the physician. Take care of the diet, incorporate mild exercises, drink enough fluids, and take adequate rest. Contact the healthcare physician before choosing home care. In case a person develop severe symptoms, contact the physician immediately.

Prevention is always better than cure. It is necessary for the caretakers also to be very careful and hygienic, along with following the guidelines to avoid getting the infection.

Conclusion:

COVID-19 has taken a big face of a pandemic, but most of the cases are not that severe. Hence, now the recent guidelines recommend homecare for a varied number of patients. It is necessary to contact the physician when a person suspect or get COVID. Also, a person should know what has to be done during home care to recover fast and keep others also safe from the spread of the infection. To know more about the home care tips following COVID-19 positive test results, contact a physician or specialist online.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.

How Long Is COVID Contagious?

Experts do not still have an answer as to exactly how long the COVID virus is contagious. However, COVID might be contagious for twelve to fourteen days. Severely immunocompromised people might be contagious for longer periods. 

2.

What to Do When You Test COVID Positive?

If tested positive for Covid, the first thing to do is to isolate oneself from the public. Frequent washing of hands, proper sanitization of hands is required. Masks should be used when in public places. Nutritious food must be consumed.

3.

Am I Still Contagious After Being Tested Positive?

Yes, one can be contagious after testing positive. A person is more contagious within the first five days after being tested positive. If affected mildly, one can be infectious for up to ten days. 

4.

Do I Need Medication if I Test Positive for COVID?

Medication can help prevent the condition from worsening, resulting in hospitalization. Medicines should be taken appropriately as advised by the health care provider. Medicines can help to ease the symptoms and provide an easier recovery.

5.

How Long Do You Test Positive for Omicron?

The incubation period (when you are highly contagious) for Omicron is three days. One can be tested positive only if a sufficient amount of the virus is present in the body to be expressed. Some people might remain positive for about a month as the virus may remain in the body though symptoms may not be present.

6.

When Does COVID Get Worse?

The symptoms of Covid might be mild initially. But they can be intense within three to five days. The severity of the condition can vary from person to person.

7.

Can You Be Positive One Day and Negative the Next COVID?

There can be chances that one can be positive one day and negative the next day. This can be a false negative result. The test can be repeated after 48 hours to know if one is positive or negative. If symptoms are present, another test to check for positives can be avoided.

8.

How Contagious Is Omicron?

Omicron is highly contagious when compared to other variants of Covid. Omicron is so infectious that even those vaccinated and who have taken booster doses can be infected. A person infected with Omicron is highly contagious one day before symptoms appear.

9.

What Vitamins to Take if You Test Positive for COVID?

Vitamins and minerals are required to recover fast from the Covid infection. Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and Zinc are essential to boost immunity. Omega 3 fatty acids and probiotics also help to get better soon. 

10.

How Do You Recover from COVID Faster?

Adequate rest, nutritious food, and dietary supplements can help one to recover from Covid faster. A diet rich in proteins, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and zinc should be consumed. A stress-free life can speed the recovery after Covid. 

11.

Is Rapid Antigen Test Accurate?

Rapid antigen tests are 98 % accurate, provided the test is done properly. It is accurate in people who show symptoms. At times, even people who tested negative might be infected. 

12.

What Is a COVID Cough Like?

The cough associated with Covid is dry and unproductive. A cough that does not produce any phlegm is called an unproductive cough. This is because of an irritation in the lungs or throat.
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Dr. Radha Peruvemba Hariharan

Diabetology

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