How Cancer Patients Should Protect Themselves Against Contracting COVID-19
Those dealing with cancer and the many costs and complications that accompany it already have plenty to worry about without also contracting COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus. This illness has swept across the globe, leaving hundreds of thousands infecting and placing many people at risk, especially those who are already battling a major illness. Luckily, infection by the coronavirus is not a foregone conclusion; if you have cancer, know that there are a number of steps you can take to protect yourself and your family from the virus, many of which are simple and easy to follow. To learn more about how cancer patients should protect themselves against contracting COVID-19, keep reading as the people at Chemo Mouthpiece™ provide some tips and suggestions.
Why It’s Important for Cancer Patients to Protect Against COVID-19
No one wants to find that they’ve come down with a virus, but this scenario presents a much greater risk for cancer patients than it does of most others. Not only can cancer place significant strain on the body – strain that can make fighting off a case of COVID-19 much more difficult – but the effects of many common cancer treatments can easily complicate the situation even further.
One of the most widely used treatments for cancer is chemotherapy, which involves flooding the body with toxic chemicals designed to seek out and destroy cancerous tissue. Unfortunately, the drugs used in chemotherapy can’t tell the difference between friend and foe, leading them to damage otherwise healthy cells that simply divide and grow in a similar way to cancer cells. This is the cause of the many side effects of chemotherapy, from the loss of hair to the development of oral mucositis.
Because the cells in bone marrow reproduce quickly in much the same way that the cells in a tumor do, these tissues are a prime target for chemo drugs. Normally, our bone marrow is responsible for producing blood cells, including the white blood cells that fight infection by diseases like COVID-19, but exposure to chemo medications can hinder this process and ultimately compromise the patient’s immune system.
The result is that cancer patients are more susceptible to all types of germs, including the novel coronavirus. Without the white blood cells necessary to fend off an attack by this virus, a cancer patient can quickly find themselves succumbing to the effects of the disease, which has already proven to be fatal for thousands around the world. For cancer patients, and especially those going through chemotherapy, it is extremely important to avoid exposure to COVID-19.
How to Protect Against COVID-19 If You Have Cancer
As the scientific community has learned more about COVID-19, groups around the world – from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to the World Health Organization – have released tips for how to protect against infection by this potentially fatal illness. Below, you’ll find some of the ways that cancer patients can protect against the novel coronavirus.
Wash Your Hands
You might be getting tired of hearing this particular piece of advice, but it’s repeated often for a reason. As human beings, we use our hands for almost everything, making them perhaps the two most frequent points of contact between ourselves and the world around us. However, that makes your hands much more likely to pick up viruses like COVID-19 than any other part of the body.
When you wash your hands, the soap and friction work together to lift microbes like the ones that cause COVID-19 away from your skin to be washed down the drain. Make sure you lather and scrub for at least 20 seconds, covering the entire surface of the hand (front and back, as well as under the nails) with suds and clearing away any germs that might have accumulated.
Don’t Touch Your Face
For many of us, this one is difficult to follow consistently because we’re so used to touching our faces often and without thought. As much as you can, though, avoid touching your face with your hands, because the mouth and eyes are perfect entry points for the virus. Remind yourself as often as you need to, and try to discourage the behavior in those around you as well.
Stay at Home
This is a big one: If no one in your house is infected with or carrying the coronavirus, the best thing you can do is keep it that way. Avoid contact with those outside your household as much as possible – which goes for those you live with, too. Even if you stay inside, a friend or family member could bring the virus into your home and infect you without contracting it themselves.
If you have to go out, maintain a distance of at least 6 feet between yourself and others – though if your immune system is compromised, consider asking a friend to run your errands for you to avoid the risk of COVID-19 exposure.
Clean and Disinfect Household Surfaces
Any surface in your home that’s frequently touched should be cleaned and disinfected each day; this means things like doorknobs, light switches, tables, counters, handles, phone screens, faucets, toilets, etc. Wash them with soap and water first, then apply a household disinfectant – most common brands should work. Another option would be to use a solution containing at least 70% alcohol or a bleach mixture made with 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of water.
Fight Mouth Sores Caused by Chemotherapy with the Chemo Mouthpiece™
During these times of financial uncertainty, we want to ensure that our product is still accessible to those in need. So, while we navigate this pandemic together we have reduced the price by 50%.
Though it can’t do much to prevent infection by the coronavirus, the Chemo Mouthpiece™ can still be of help to cancer patients going through chemotherapy. Our powerful oral cryotherapy device can reduce the severity of many patients’ oral mucositis symptoms, and we can ship it directly to your door for a hands-free delivery in three days or less. To learn more about the Chemo Mouthpiece™, including how cryotherapy can fight mouth sores caused by chemo, visit us online or call (866) 461-7518 today.