Everything You Need to Know About Social Distancing
Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen the number of coronavirus cases increase in Canada. To reduce the spread of COVID-19 in communities across the country, governments and health officials have asked the public to practice social distancing — staying home, avoiding crowds and refraining from common greetings like handshakes.
Making a conscious effort to create physical space between each other is a proven way to limit the spread of illness during an outbreak. Practicing social distancing can be one of the best ways to help you stay healthy, particularly if practiced alongside good hygiene habits, such as washing your hands often, coughing and sneezing into your arm and avoiding touching frequently used surfaces.
As first, social distancing may seem strange and will require a conscious effort. Many of us need to break habits and change our everyday routine to minimize close physical contact with those around us. It all starts with:
- avoiding crowded places or non-essential gatherings,
- avoiding physical greetings such as handshakes and hugs,
- keeping a distance of at least two metres from other people as much as possible,
- limiting physical contact with people at higher risk, such as older adults and those with poor health, and
- keeping in touch with friends and loved ones by using the phone or other technology.
Here are some simple ways that you can modify your daily routine to practice social distancing:
- greet people with a wave,
- stay home as much as possible, including for meals and entertainment,
- use technology to keep in touch with friends and family,
- telework and hold virtual meetings, and
- use food delivery services or online shopping, if available.
However, there are times when social distancing is not enough. If you are concerned that you may have COVID-19, stay home, contact your local public health authority and follow their advice.