Social distancing has been proven to be an effective way to counter the spread of COVID-19. It limits the chances that one infected individual will go on to infect others.
What is social distancing?
Social distancing, also called physical distancing, is maintaining physical separation between yourself and those not in your immediate household. The primary way it is carried out is by maintaining at least six feet of distance between yourself and any other person while outside, and by staying at home and away from others as much as possible.
Self-isolation and self-quarantine are also forms of social distancing. If you have the virus, then self-isolation ensures you aren’t transmitting it to anyone by staying at home unless symptoms worsen to a point where you need to go to a hospital. Self-quarantine is if you suspect you may have contracted COVID-19 and isolate yourself to prevent any further spread.
Some effective ways to practice social distancing are:
Minimize the time you must spend outside the house by stocking up on essential supplies such as groceries and medication. Should you have to self-quarantine or isolate, you’ll be grateful that you thought ahead and gave yourself enough essential resources to hunker down for two weeks or more.
Minimize venturing out
Adopting habits that prevent you from leaving the house are key as well. For example, if your job permits it, work from home as much as possible. Instead of heading to the gym for a workout, exercise at home. Instead of heading to bars and restaurants, order takeout or delivery. Socializing with friends via phone calls and video conferences instead of in-person. Do whatever it takes to stay at home as much as possible.
Ask for help when necessary
See if there are ways your family or friends can help each other stay inside. If you are immunocompromised or otherwise vulnerable to the virus, ask if someone could deliver groceries to your front door. If you feel safe enough to go to the store yourself, see if your neighbors need help. There are also many on-demand apps for food delivery and grocery shopping. They may be more expensive, but it’s a price worth paying to ensure you’re not exposed to the virus.
Practice good safety habits while outside
While out and about if need be, be sure to practice good safety habits such as avoiding directly touching any surfaces, using hand sanitizer, wearing a mask, and maintaining at least six feet between anyone around you.