Girl Scout Troop 85197 Busts Covid-19 Myths During Virtual Meeting

Bedford Girl Scout Troop 85197

 

Writers Lizzie and Kate Morrow – Click to view the full-sized image

On Sunday, April 19 our 9th Grade Girl Scout troop met virtually for the first time to discuss the coronavirus and some of its myths. Our Girl Scout troop usually meets on Sundays, but our meeting was canceled because of the coronavirus. We have heard many different myths about the coronavirus, and our troop leaders know a lot about it, so we decided to have a virtual meeting to talk about it. Here are some of the myths we busted.

Myth: Hand dryers can kill the coronavirus
You should still dry your hands with a hand dryer or paper towels, but hand dryers will not kill the coronavirus because the heat cannot reach a high enough temperature on your skin to kill the coronavirus.

Myth: Drinking water every 15 minutes can kill the coronavirus by washing it into your stomach
Drinking water will not wash the coronavirus into your stomach or kill it, but you should still drink water often to stay hydrated.

Myth: Kids can’t get coronavirus
Older people, or people with other medical conditions like asthma, diabetes, or heart disease are more likely to become severely ill, but children can still get the coronavirus even without showing symptoms.

Myth: Spraying yourself with alcohol or chlorine, or bathing in hand sanitizer can kill the coronavirus
This can be harmful to your skin; you should only use alcohol or diluted chlorine to disinfect surfaces. Using hand sanitizer (which is 70% alcohol) on your hands can be helpful, but washing your hands is still better. If you have access to water and soap, wash your hands instead to save hand sanitizer for people who need it.

Myth: Everyone should wear a face mask
People who are sick should wear a face mask to reduce virus contamination in their environment and help other people not get sick. People who don’t think they are sick should wear a face mask when they go to places where physical distancing isn’t possible – like the grocery store and the pharmacy. This reduces their risk of getting exposed to coronavirus and also reminds them not to touch their face.

Myth: The coronavirus will die in warmer weather
There is evidence that the coronavirus can be transmitted in all areas, including areas with hot and humid weather.

Myth: You can tell if you can have the coronavirus by holding your breath for ten seconds
One of the symptoms of the coronavirus is shortness of breath, but you can still have it without showing this symptom.

NOW FOR SOME FACTS

Fact: How the coronavirus spreads
It spreads from person to person, but we don’t know if it is through close contact or if it is airborne. It can be spread through close contact with other people, touching items used by someone with the virus without disinfecting them first, and coughing on other people.

Fact: About the coronavirus
This is a new type of coronavirus. It used to affect animals, but now it affects humans. The symptoms include fever, dry coughs, and shortness of breath. Scientists think the basic reproductive number is 2-3, which means that every person that gets the coronavirus will infect two to three people. This also means that the number of people infected is exponentially growing. There is no vaccine for the coronavirus.

Fact: How to stay safe 

You should wash your hands often for at least 20 seconds and you shouldn’t touch your face. Disinfect surfaces often even if you don’t know anyone who is sick. Cough into your arm and wear a face mask when you are out in public. Call the hospital before you go because they might want you to stay home or go to a special area. Avoid close contact and large groups even if you are not showing symptoms because you can spread the coronavirus before you start to show symptoms.

Fact: Looking to the future
Many things are going to be canceled for a long time, so make sure you are interacting virtually with your friends and family. Try to keep a normal schedule for sleeping and eating, and exercise if you can to stay healthy. Obtain information from reliable sources such as the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and the World Health Organization (www.who.int). If you hear something on social media or the news that doesn’t make sense, check these sources.

IF MORE QUESTIONS COME UP

There are a lot of coronavirus myths, so stay informed, and check with the World Health Organization if you have more questions:   https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public/myth-busters.

Editor’s Note: This meeting of Girl Scout Troop 85197 was conducted by troop leaders Patricia Fabian, Associate Professor at Boston University School of Public Health, and Sue Turner, a Senior Program Manager at Massachusetts General Hospital.


Keep our journalism strong! Support The Citizen Journalism Fund today. Contact The Bedford Citizen: editor@thebedfordcitizen.org or 781-430-8827

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