It’s easy to feel a sense of information overload these days. From news articles to government messages to social media posts, there’s a huge amount of information floating around about COVID-19. And while there’s no denying the importance of staying informed, it’s also crucial to be aware that not all of the information you hear or read about is true—there are many rumors, conspiracy theories, and bits of misinformation circulating on social media and other channels.
To help clear some confusion and separate fact from fiction, we thought we would highlight some of the most common COVID-19 myths. Here’s what you need to know:
Myth: If you can hold your breath for 10 seconds without coughing, you don’t have COVID-19.
The only way to truly know if you do not have COVID-19 is if you take an approved test and the results come back negative. According to the World Health Organization, breath-holding exercises cannot be used to confirm whether or not you have COVID-19.
Myth: COVID-19 only affects the elderly
COVID-19 is a serious illness that can affect people of all ages. Older individuals are at a higher risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 and hospitalizations increase with age, but younger people are at risk as well and should take proper precautions like frequent hand washing, social distancing, and not touching your face to reduce the risk of transmission.
Myth: COVID-19 can’t be transmitted in warm or hot weather
There’s a lot of speculation that COVID-19 will become less of a problem during the warm summer months, but there’s no evidence to show that COVID-19 is not transmitted in warm climates. Additionally, cases of COVID-19 have occurred in countries with warm or hot weather. It’s also important to understand that there’s also no evidence to show that cold weather can kill COVID-19.
Myth: Drinking alcohol protects you from getting COVID-19
Drinking alcohol will not protect you from COVID-19. In fact, frequent or excessive alcohol consumption can raise your risk of health problems, as alcohol can weaken your immune system over time. Additionally, heavy alcohol consumption can increase the risk of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), which is one of the more serious health complications of COVID-19.
Myth: Hand dryers can kill COVID-19
Proper hand washing with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer is an important step in protecting against COVID-19, but using a hand dryer will not kill the virus, according to the World Health Organization.
Myth: COVID-19 is just like the flu
Many people believe COVID-19 is just like the flu—possibly because both are respiratory illnesses. But the reality is, COVID-19 and influenza are not one in the same. COVID-19 has a higher mortality rate and there is also a higher rate of severe infections from COVID-19 compared to influenza. The illnesses can also present with different symptoms, though there is a lot we still don’t know about COVID-19.
Myth: 5G technology causes COVID-19
There are lots of rumors circulating that link 5G cell phone technology and COVID-19, but these are nothing more than rumors. The government confirms that 5G technology doesn’t cause the novel coronavirus.
If you would like to meet with a knowledgeable doctor, consider contacting Arizona OB/GYN Affiliates (AOA) at 602-343-6174 or visit www.aoafamily.com. We have offices in Phoenix, Ahwatukee, Casa Grande, Goodyear, Scottsdale, Gilbert, and Chandler.