Srinagar: Head of Medicine at Government Medical College and Hospital, Jammu Dr Vijay Kundal Saturday said that the age-old adage ‘prevention is better than cure’ had the greatest relevance to COVID-19 infection as there was no better protection against it than to adopt COVID-appropriate behaviour.
He said that the appropriate behaviour included wearing a mask, frequent hand sanitisation and keeping social distance and avoiding crowded places.
Dr Kundal reiterated the government’s instructions of going out only if necessary, self hygiene, wearing a mask and avoiding crowds.
He requested the people to ‘teach social distancing to others around’.
“Timely vaccination is another major defence against the virus,” Dr Kundal said.
On if one was already infected, he said, “Still there is no need to panic as most of the COVID cases fall under the mild category who recover easily.
Such people develop symptoms like cough and cold. They should immediately isolate themselves and eat healthy food.” Dr Kundal said that COVID-19 patients without any comorbidity recover easily in most of the cases.
“In any case, if one’s oxygen saturation level falls below 94 percent, the patient, whether comorbid or not, should immediately consult a doctor,” he said.
Dr Kundal warned against self-medication, use of anticoagulants and steroids without a doctor’s prescription and said the steroids are a “double-edged sword”.
“On one hand they help COVID patients, and on the other they may weaken one’s immunity,” he said.
Dr Kundal suggested taking the six-minute walk thest, a rudimentary exercise to judge if one needs medical help or not.
“In the test, the subject walks for six minutes, and if his oxygen saturation level falls, either by three percent or below 94, it is time to consult a doctor.
Such patients must lie in a prone position to restore oxygen saturation quickly,” he said.
“In prone-position the patient is made to lie facing down, with arms bent comfortably at the elbow and positioned forward.” Dr Kundal said that if COVID symptoms persist even after four to five days, one must immediately seek medical help.
“Please do not delay hospitalization. Many of COVID deaths are due to delay in reporting by the patients,” he said.