Such as the song says, “It ain’t over yet.” In fact, the World Health Organization warned Monday, that “the worst is yet ahead,” discussing the coronavirus pandemic.
6 months since the new coronavirus outbreak, and the death toll has surpassed 500,000 with the amount of confirmed infections topping 10 million. In the U.S., several states recorded record highs this week, including where I live in California along with in Florida and Texas. In a June 23 hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Anthony Fauci, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, called the next couple of weeks “critical” for controlling the spread.
Baby boomers need to pay attention. Although, details about COVID-19 keeps evolving, one thing hasn’t changed. Older adults are at high risk of severe illness and death from the coronavirus. Take notice: Eight out of 10 COVID-19-related deaths reported in the United States have already been among adults aged 65 years and older, in line with the CDC.
With all this at heart, you might want to think about a number of the latest CDC updates for older adults:
* If you’re under 65 and think you’re from the woods, think again. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in June expanded its warning of who’s most in danger for severe illness from COVID-19, dropping 65 because the age-specific threshold for when risk increases in adults. To put it just, as you age, your risk for severe illness from COVID-19 increases. While those 85 and older are at the greatest risk, people in their 50s are often at higher risk for severe illness than people in their 40s. And people in their 60s or 70s are at higher risk for severe illness than people in their 50s.
* The CDC has updated its official list of COVID-19 symptoms. Warning signs of the sickness include: fever or chills; cough; shortness of breath or difficulty breathing; fatigue; muscle or body aches; headache; new lack of taste or smell; sore throat; congestion or runny nose; nausea or vomiting; and diarrhea โควิด. Symptoms that require immediate medical attention include: trouble breathing; persistent pain or pressure in the chest; new confusion; inability to wake or stay awake; and bluish lips or face. Remember, in older adults (aged 65 and older), normal body temperature may be less than in younger adults. For this reason, fever temperatures can also be lower in older adults which means it could be less noticeable.
* The CDC also clarified which underlying conditions are most associated with COVID-19 hospitalizations and death. On the expanded list: chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), obesity (BMI of 30 or higher), a weakened immunity system, type 2 diabetes, sickle cell disease and heart conditions, such as for instance heart failure, coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathies. Thus far, the top three underlying health conditions among coronavirus patients are cardiovascular disease, diabetes and chronic lung disease.
* With the rising rate of infections, let’s talk masks. They’ve some cool looking cloth face coverings nowadays, but which offer the most effective protection? One of the most crucial features you’ll need are multiple layers of fabric, which are much better than just one, Richard Wenzel, M.D., infectious diseases epidemiologist and emeritus professor of internal medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. states in a write-up for Consumers Reports. Mayo Clinic agrees that “cloth masks should include multiple layers of fabric.” A general guideline is that thicker, denser fabrics is going to do a much better job than thinner, more loosely woven ones. Flannel pajama material, for example, which has a tight weave, might be a great option, Wenzel adds. If you plan to purchase a mask online make certain it is created using tightly woven fabric and fits snugly, fully covering the mouth area and nose, wrapping under your chin as an anchor.
* Staying healthy is always important, but even more so during this pandemic. The CDC recommends that older adults receive recommended flu and pneumonia vaccinations, eat healthy, stay active, avoid excessive alcohol use, and get plenty of sleep. It is also important to learn to deal with the strain that comes from a pandemic in a wholesome way. Take breaks from the news, embrace your spirituality, stay associated with loved ones, take care to unwind and take action you enjoy, and practice deep breathing.
* Federal health officials are bracing for the fall, when the flu and COVID-19 will soon be circulating at the same time. Last week, the CDC’s Redfield urged the public to be ready and “to embrace” the flu vaccine. “This single act will save lives,” he said. The CDC is also having a test that may simultaneously test for flu and COVID-19.
So, are we having any fun yet?
Yes, I understand. This really is hard. We miss our grandchildren, concerts in the park, eating out, and gatherings with friends. The more stimulating, devil-may-care attitude the majority are displaying at this time may be contagious. However, we boomers should be extra vigilant.
The CDC recommends avoiding activities where taking protective measures might be difficult, such as for instance activities where social distancing can’t be maintained. “In general, the more people you communicate with, the more closely you communicate with them, and the longer that interaction, the larger your risk of getting and spreading COVID-19,” their site states.