Sipping water every 15 minutes can prevent the coronavirus. Men should be clean-shaven to reduce the risk of contracting the coronavirus.
If you’ve been online or used social media recently, you’ve likely been inundated with information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) like the examples above. Unfortunately, information like this doesn’t help protect you from the coronavirus, and in some cases can cause harm.
Here are some common coronavirus myths and the truth behind each claim.
Myth No. 1: Sipping Water Every 15 Minutes Helps Protects Against Coronavirus
The Truth: The thought behind this myth is that drinking water frequently will wash away any viral particles that get into your mouth or throat. While sipping water frequently will help keep you hydrated, it won’t provide protection against viruses. Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious-diseases expert at Vanderbilt University, says: “We always caution anyone healthy and people who are sick to keep up fluid intake and keep mucus membranes moist. It makes you feel better; there is no clear indication that it directly protects you against complications.”
Similarly, the World Health Organization (WHO) notes that regularly rinsing your nose with saline spray does not provide protection against the virus.
Myth No. 2: Men Should Be Clean-Shaven To Avoid Contracting The Coronavirus
The Truth: The above image from the CDC has been making the rounds online with claims that the organization recommends people should be clean-shaven to avoid contracting the virus. The organization released the graphic in 2017, and the CDC has made no such facial hair claim specific to the coronavirus. Of the graphic in question, a spokesperson for the CDC said it “was developed several years ago and is intended for professionals who wear respirators for worker protection. CDC does not recommend the routine use of respirators outside of workplace settings (in the community).”
Myth No. 3: Surgical Masks Help Protect You Against Coronavirus
The Truth: As noted in our previous post, wearing a surgical mask in public will not protect you against the coronavirus. You should only use a mask if you are actively ill or if you are caring for someone who is ill.
Myth No. 4: Colloidal Silver Is Effective Against The Coronavirus
The Truth: Colloidal silver — or any homeopathic remedy — has not been proven to be effective in preventing or treating the coronavirus.
Myth No. 5: It’s Unsafe To Receive Packages from China
The Truth: WHO says it’s safe to receive items from China. The coronavirus does not survive on items like packages or letters.
Myth No. 6: Eating Garlic Can Help Prevent Coronavirus
The Truth: While garlic does have antimicrobial properties, there is no evidence to suggest that eating it will protect against coronavirus.
Myth No. 7: Antibiotics Are An Effective Coronavirus Treatment
The Truth: Antibiotics are only effective in treating bacterial infections, not viruses. If you or someone you know is hospitalized with the coronavirus, you may receive treatment with an antibiotic to help prevent a co-infection from bacteria, according to WHO.
Myth No. 8: There Are Specific Medications To Treat Or Prevent The New Coronavirus
The Truth: At this time, there is no specific medication recommended to treat or prevent coronavirus. Medications are given for supportive care like fever reduction. There are some treatments being researched and they will be tested through clinical trials, according to WHO.
If you have questions about the new coronavirus, contact your doctor or local health department. Updates about the spread of the virus can be found via the CDC and WHO.