If you feel like you’ve been hit by a tidal wave of information over the past couple of months, you’re not alone. Whether you’re looking for answers about how COVID-19 affects you personally or the impact on your business, there’s a lot to sift through.
To save you time, we put together a basic overview of COVID-19 and how your esthetician practice will need to operate once the doors reopen.
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a disease caused by a virus known as SARS Co-V-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2). Symptoms range from mild to severe and typically show up between two and fourteen days after you’re exposed to the virus. Some people don’t experience any symptoms at all and may not even know they have the virus.
The most common symptoms are fever, cough, shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and sometimes loss of taste or smell. Many people with COVID-19 are able to recover at home, but some need to be hospitalized for more severe symptoms.
If you have any of these symptoms or if you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you should first call your doctor for guidance before visiting an ER or urgent care facility. You should also isolate yourself from others until you have been symptom-free for fourteen days.
How does COVID-19 spread?
COVID-19 typically spreads from person to person through microscopic respiratory droplets that are released when someone coughs, sneezes, or talks. If you are closer than six feet to someone carrying the virus, you can inhale these respiratory droplets and become infected.
You can also be infected by touching a surface with the virus on it then touching your nose, mouth, or eyes.
How can you protect yourself from catching the virus?
The easiest way to avoid COVID-19 is to limit the amount of contact you have with people outside of your home. Stay home as much as possible, making trips to public places like stores only when necessary. Many states currently have orders in place restricting where you can go.
When you do go out in public, you should wear a mask that covers both your nose and mouth. Practice social distancing and try to stay at least 6 feet away from other people.
It’s also important to wash your hands regularly to protect yourself from contaminated surfaces, especially after going to public places and before eating. You’ll need to wash your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
Be sure to clean and disinfect surfaces that are touched frequently such as doorknobs, light switches, phones, toilet handles, and faucets.
How can you cope during the COVID-19 outbreak?
While we’re all experiencing the current situation in different ways, most people agree that their stress level is higher than normal. Between worrying about your own health or that of family members, concern for your business, and dealing with all the restrictions in place, it’s a lot to handle.
It’s important to take steps to manage your stress so here are a few ideas:
- take breaks from the news and social media to avoid information-overwhelm
- take care of your health by getting exercise, eating healthy foods, and getting enough sleep
- try breathing exercises or meditating
- make time to connect with others virtually or by phone, especially if you live alone
Whatever your current circumstances look like, this is a difficult situation so it’s normal to feel added stress or anxiety. If you’re having a hard time coping, many clinicians currently offer virtual therapy sessions which can be helpful.
How do you protect yourself & your clients when you return to work?
When the current restrictions are lifted and you’re able to open the doors to your practice, it’s important to take the proper precautions to prevent illness. You need to protect yourself and your employees, as well as your clients.
The easiest way to avoid COVID-19 in your workplace is to prevent anyone who is sick from coming in. Ask your staff to stay home if they’re sick and to go home if they develop symptoms at work. Screen all clients for symptoms by telephone before they come for an appointment.
Be sure to wear gloves, a mask, and eye protection during all appointments. Use new protective gear for each client and dispose of all protective gear when finished with a treatment.
To avoid spreading possible germs, clean and disinfect treatment areas before and after each client. You’ll also need to clean and disinfect reception areas and restrooms daily.
If you’re looking for ways to bring in revenue while businesses are still closed, take a look at this post for some helpful ideas.
The Bottom Line
The COVID-19 outbreak can be scary, but taking proper precautions helps you lower your chances of getting sick or spreading the virus to others. Once businesses are open, it’s important to protect your staff and clients from illness. We’ll get through this and eventually life will feel normal again.
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