With the Ebola virus hitting Spain, here are our top tips to prevent Ebola infection:
1. Understand how Ebola spreads and the risks. Avoid infected areas and people. Ebola can be spread through direct contact primarily with blood, vomit, diarrhoea and other secretions from an infected person. Other direct contact with even sweat can pass on the Ebola virus if your hands have cuts or abrasions, eating food prepared by a person infected with Ebola, or contact with bedding and clothing of infected people. Hospital workers dealing with Ebola patients should wear appropriate protective gear at all times, all medical equipment must be sterilised and the patients’ room disinfected. Direct contact with patients should be minimal. Don’t panic – it’s not airborne.
2. Avoid infected areas and hospitals in infected towns… unless you think you may have Ebola. Be cautious with door handles, toilets etc. And do not at any time touch dead bodies of suspected or confirmed Ebola patients.
3. Recognise the symptoms. Symptoms may become clear any time from 48 hours to 3 weeks and usually become apparent a week after infection. Symptoms include:
- Fever, headache, joint, muscle aches and feeling weak
- Diarrhoea, vomiting, rash, stomach pain
- Kidney and Liver failure and internal bleeding may be possible.
Diarrhoea and nausea discomfort can be minimised with lots of electrolyte drinks and stay hydrated until you can be treated. Keep monitoring your blood pressure.
4. Keep up a strong, effective immune system. This is a big factor to help your body defend the virus so eat plenty of fresh fruit and veg and stay healthy! You have a higher chance of defeating Ebola if you have a strong immune system so stay healthy and rest.
5. Wash your hands a lot. If possible with anti-bacterial soap. But the Ebola virus can also be destroyed with UV light, very high temperatures and by drying it out. Cold and damp conditions are the worst conditions!