Coronavirus took whole countries by storm this year. Most people were not well equipped for it, and it caused a lot of casualties. Entire nations have quarantined themselves in order to avoid the spread of the virus. Although people are doing all they can to keep it under control, the virus is still spreading.
This may be caused by the fact that most people don’t know the symptoms. One of the most prevalent symptoms of the virus is fever. A thermometer gun is used in most checkpoints and airports to determine the temperatures of individuals.
Other people use thermometer guns at home to ensure the safety of their families. If you are one of them, or if you are thinking of getting one for yourself or your family, here is a guide on how to use thermometer guns for coronavirus.
Symptoms of Coronavirus
Coronaviruses are a large virus family. They cause different illnesses in people, while others like the canine and feline coronavirus affect animals. The COVID-19 virus is short for Corona Virus Disease 2019, and it is said to be transmitted through the live animal market to people, and it is now transferred from person to person.
COVID-19 has a 14-day quarantine period from the day of exposure, and a person who is released from quarantine after the 14 days cannot transmit the disease to others if they don’t have the symptoms of the disease.
COVID-19 is the official name for the illness caused by the current virus. It is a respiratory illness and can be transferred through person-to-person contact. The respiratory disease can have symptoms that mimic a common cold and can develop to more severe diseases like pneumonia.
Before going ahead and judging that anyone with a high fever has coronavirus, there are many other symptoms to keep in mind. The presence of these symptoms, combined with the fever, can be a sign of the virus.
Some of the symptoms associated with coronavirus are;
- Shortness of breath
- Sore throat
These might sound like symptoms of normal flu so that you might get confused. Well, some of the ways to narrow it down can be if;
- You were overseas for the past two weeks, and you have a respiratory illness
- You have been in contact with someone who was recently overseas, or a person who is a confirmed case and you show signs of respiratory disease, whether you have a fever or not
Coronavirus or Flu?
As I said before, the symptoms of the virus can mimic those of a common cold or the flu, so how can you know whether it is a regular flu or if it is actually the virus?
The symptoms that are common with both the virus and flu or common cold are fatigue, sore throat, and coughing. The symptoms are similar because they are both respiratory diseases. One thing that sets the virus apart is the shortness of breath.
Another way to know whether it is the virus or not is to check for a runny nose. Sneezing and a runny nose are symptoms of the flu, so it is unlikely that it is the virus. Aches and pains will also accompany the flu.
Although there is a lot of overlap with the diseases, one distinguishing factor is the shortness of breath. This is because the virus attacks the lungs. Don’t panic yet, though, as this can be symptoms of an allergic attack. Before going to the doctor, make sure you have a combination of other symptoms like fever, dry cough, together with shortness of breath.
How to Use Thermometer Guns for Coronavirus
Since the virus can be transmitted through inter-personal contact, ordinary thermometers cannot be used to check for a fever. This is where the thermometer gun comes in. The gun is a non-contact one that can let you take a person’s temperature with minimal to no contact. They use infrared sensors to measure the heat emitted by a body without touching the other person.
To use the thermometer, point it toward the person you want to measure and click on the trigger. The thermometer will measure the radiation emitted by the person and convert the readings into electricity, and this way, you get the readings.
For the thermometer to work effectively, it has to be held at precisely the correct distance from the surface to get accurate readings. Holding it too close will give higher temperatures while holding it too far gives lower temperatures.
Getting an accurate reading depends on the distance to spot ratio. The size and height of a person will determine how close or far from them, you should be to get the correct readings. Other factors should be taken into play too. For example, a person who has been running or doing physical exercises can give a higher reading even though they don’t have a fever.
The thermometers also have a +/-1 degree or a +/-2 degree accuracy. This means you can get a higher or lower reading on the thermometer. This can give a false reading, so it might be better to use a clinical thermometer.
In order to get accurate readings, always make sure to;
- Know the distance-to-spot ratio of your thermometer. Also, make sure you are close enough to the person you want to measure so that it reads the surface you want to measure
- Make sure the thermometer’s lens is clean, free from dust and scratches
- Stay away from areas that emit high radiation as this can confuse the reading
- Let the thermometer adjust to the temperature of the surrounding region before measuring the person
Is A Thermometer Gun Accurate?
The infrared thermometer is exact and consistent if used correctly. To get the best result, the distance between the object, in this case, is a person, and the thermometer should be smaller, and the laser has to be pointing toward the person.
There might be a problem; however, if it isn’t aimed at the person directly or if the distance between the two is great. The results can be compromised since the thermometer measures the radiation. A great distance might cause some of the radiation emitted to be released to the atmosphere, making you get false readings.
The thermometer is safe to use when you take into account the mode of transmission of disease. Since coronavirus can be spread through person-to-person contact, this thermometer is the best and safest tool to use. This is because it can measure the temperature from a distance so you won’t have to touch the person, therefore, reducing the risk of the virus spreading
The thermometer gun is very suitable for use if you measure many people at a go, which is why it is used in airports and roadblocks. Since there is no contact between you and the people you measure, there is no risk of transmitting the virus among the people.
It might not be safe to use a thermometer on a person. The thermometer uses infrared radiation and lasers to gauge the temperatures, but this can cause skin and eye irritation if the laser hits the eye.
With the virus running wild, there are some measures you can take to make sure you don’t contact it. These are some of the steps you should follow;
1. Wash your hands regularly
You should always make sure you wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water. You can also use an alcohol-based hand rub like a hand sanitizer.
Doing this is necessary to kill viruses that can be on your hands. You might have been in contact with a person who has the infection, and washing or sanitizing your hands is the most effective way to kill the virus. Make sure you don’t eat or touch your face without washing your hands to avoid contamination.
2. Avoid crowded places
Crowded places are highly contagious places. You never know who can be contaminated, and the virus can spread that way quickly. To be on the safe side, keep a distance of at least 1 meter, 3 feet, between yourself and other people. This safety precaution should be taken very seriously, especially if the person near you is coughing or sneezing.
The distance is necessary because you should avoid liquid droplets that fall from a person’s nose or mouth whenever they cough or sneeze. If you are close to the person, there is a chance that you will breathe the droplets in, which might include the virus if the person has it.
3. Don’t touch your face
Avoid touching your nose, mouth, or eyes unless you clean your hands first. This is because our hands come into contact with so many surfaces. These surfaces hold loads of dirt, and once we touch them, all that dirt is transferred to our hands.
The hands, once contaminated, can transfer the virus to the nose, eyes, and mouth. This way, the virus enters the body and proceeds to make you sick. Washing your hands regularly and not touching your face will help minimize the chances of that happening.
4. Practice respiratory hygiene
Practicing respiratory hygiene is not as hard as it sounds; in fact, it basic human decency. You need to make sure you plus anyone around follows these practices; always cover your mouth and nose with a bent elbow, handkerchief or tissue when coughing or sneezing and throw the tissue away immediately after use. You should do this to ensure no droplets are released into the air, protecting everyone from any respiratory diseases, not just COVID-19.
5. Seek medical care if you have a fever, dry cough, and difficulty breathing
If you notice any of the symptoms above and most importantly, if you have a combination of fever, difficulty breathing, and a cough, seek medical attention immediately. If you have a runny nose, it will probably be a cold or the flu, so just stay at home. But if your nose is dry and the other symptoms that might be symptoms of the virus, especially difficulty breathing and it is not an allergy, see a doctor.
Make a call in advance so that the hospital is ready to accommodate you. Make sure you follow the directives issued by your local health authority.
The local authorities have all the current information on how to handle your situation. Calling in advance will help them prepare and direct you to a place that is equipped to handle the situation. It will also help in protecting you and prevent the spreading of the virus and other infections to other people around.
6. Stay informed
Make sure always to keep abreast of the latest developments about the virus. Listen and follow any advice issued by healthcare providers, local and national public health authorities. Follow their guidelines to ensure you protect yourself and others around you from COVID-19. They are the ones who can give the best advice on what you should do to protect yourself, your family, and others.
Protection Measures for Those Who Have Been in Infected Areas
If you have traveled to an infected region in the past 14 days, there is a chance that you may have contracted the virus. So, what should you do to prevent spreading the virus even more, even if you have no symptoms?
- Follow the above safety measures
- If you start feeling unwell, no matter how mild the symptoms might seem, stay at home. The symptoms can include a headache and a slightly runny nose. Stay at home until you recover, making sure to avoid contact with others. Why should you stay at home? Going to the hospital or medical facilities with these symptoms will cause congestion in hospitals and increase contact with other people. Avoiding hospitals unless absolutely necessary will allow them to operate effectively and protect others from COVID-19 and other infections.
- Avoid public places or public transportation.
- Seek medical attention as fast as possible if you develop a fever, cough, or if you have difficulty breathing. These signs may be due to a severe condition or a respiratory infection. Call a healthcare facility in advance and make sure to inform the healthcare provider if you have traveled to an infected area or been in contact with someone who has. Doing this will give the healthcare provider to direct you to the correct facility. It will also help them to prevent the infection or other viruses from spreading.
If you have COVID-19
- Isolate yourself even from people in your home and limit your contact with pets
- Wear a face mask. Wear the mask if you are around other people and before entering a hospital or healthcare facility
- Do not share personal household items like utensils and bedding
- Wash any household items that are shared very thoroughly with soap and water
- Clean and disinfect any surfaces that are touched frequently. If you cannot do it yourself, your healthcare provider should wait for as long as possible after you’ve left the room before coming in and cleaning it.
Common Myths about COVID-19
1. It cannot be transmitted in hot and humid areas
As yet, there has been no evidence to suggest the virus cannot be transmitted in hot areas. It can be transmitted anywhere, no matter the climate. You should adopt protective measures in whatever areas. Also, make sure to wash your hands regularly to kill any germs.
2. Cold weather cannot kill the new coronavirus
No matter the climate you are in, the normal body temperature for humans is 37 degrees Celsius, and the virus can survive in the human body. Practice protective and hygiene measures to be on the safe side.
3. Hand dryers are not effective in killing the virus
No matter what people say, hand dryers cannot kill the new coronavirus. Make sure always to clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub and dry using paper towels, which you should discard immediately, or a hand dryer.
4. The thermometer gun is effective in detecting the virus
The most that the thermometer gun can do is detect a fever. As we said before, the thermometer gun measures temperature without actually touching the person. It can be effective if used properly. Make sure the distance between the thermometer and the surface to be measured is enough so that you don’t get a compromised reading.
Coronavirus has taken 2020 by storm and is causing a lot of discrimination and stigma in society. This is because people are inadequately informed about the virus, causing them to take drastic measures. Checkpoints and airports use thermometer guns to gauge whether a person has the symptoms attributed to the infection.
The thermometers are used to detect high fevers, which can be a symptom of the virus. To use the thermometer gun, you need to aim it at the person you want to measure and click on the trigger. To make sure the thermometer gets accurate readings, ensure there is enough distance between the thermometer and the person, the lens is clear and free from scratches.
Use the thermometer gun wisely to avoid causing unnecessary alarms and get help from those who might need them.