What is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19? The answer, social distancing and good hygiene practices. Social distancing is different than being quarantined or isolated and can be key in slowing down the spread of contagious diseases. It is important for us to come together as a community and everyone start to practice social distancing as much as possible, not just those who are considered higher risk for serious illness or individuals who are seriously ill.

Social distancing means:

  • Avoid large gatherings
  • Limit travel
  • Maintain a distance from others of six feet whenever possible
  • Avoid shaking hands and hugging
  • Stay home if you feel sick

Social distancing can go a long way in flattening the curve of COVID-19. Flattening the curve is when the number of cases that could result in a spike of COVID-19 cases in a short period of time is reduced. As a result, the curve is flattened, and the number of cases happen over a longer timeline which helps prevent hospital resources and employees from being overwhelmed and overcapacity. Without people taking protective measures like social distancing a spike in new cases could occur. The result of the spike in cases could have repercussions. Intensive care units could run out of beds resulting in not everyone who is sick being treated. This information can be hard to hear but it reinforces the importance of starting to practice social distancing.

Even though social distancing may affect normal day-to-day life, there are still plenty of activities to keep busy. There are a variety of activities that can be done at home; get an early start on spring cleaning, play board games, visit a virtual museum, do home projects, video chat with loved ones, meditate, find and try new recipes, make some arts and crafts, catch up on sleep, and read. Currently, social distancing doesn’t mean individuals can’t go outside, with the temperatures warming up across Alaska consider going out and getting some fresh air. Take a walk, hike, or a run, but remember to still maintain a distance of six feet from people whenever possible.

Social distancing alone will not make COVID-19 go away, but it may lessen impact and spread of the virus. By coming together as a community and social distancing ourselves, we will help to reduce the spread of COVID-19