Shopping for Essentials? Here are some tips to stay safe

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The world has been on a massive lockdown ever since the Coronavirus pandemic started. Most countries have asked their people to quarantine inside their homes and advised them to practice social distancing if they need to get out. There are several guidelines set by the World Health Organisation to help us stay safe and healthy by being cautious, one of which is to avoid any crowded place. This includes supermarkets. 

However, places like supermarkets, departmental stores, and the pharmacy are unavoidable. People need their essential household supplies, be it a lockdown or not. But we can still make sure to take all the precautions to minimize the risk and get all our supplies in minimal trips. Going on supply runs every fortnight should be enough, right? 

Here are a few things to keep in mind before you plan to leave the house:

  • Try to find a shop that will provide home delivery. This will help you avoid the market crowd and lessen the risk of exposure.
  • Assess your existing supplies’ stock and throw out any expired food and medicines. Don’t take any chances of falling sick during this time. Get fresh supplies.
  • To avoid food getting expired and potentially dangerous, just make sure you buy no more than 2-3 weeks of food.

These few rules can help maintain a good safety standard for you and prevent any unnecessary risk. Now, if you absolutely have to venture out to get your supplies, here are some tips to maximize your safety: 

Explore “contactless shopping”

Find a store that has the option of contactless shopping to help you avoid those crowds. Contactless shopping lets you order your items over the phone and pay for them right away. Afterward, you can go to the store and pick them up without having to linger around the crowd and risk coming in contact with anyone else. This option is ideal for you and also the store employees. 

Plan out everything beforehand

The shorter and infrequent your trips are, the better. This can be achieved by making a list of everything you need from the grocery shop and the pharmacy. Make sure the list is complete to avoid having to go back.

You can also avoid the crowds by going out during non-peak or unusual hours. It could be early mornings on weekdays or afternoons on weekends. Try to schedule it smartly. 

If you do visit the shop when it is crowded, follow the safety guidelines of social distancing and keep a minimum of 6 feet away from other people. 

Keep your mask on and a sanitizer with you

It is better to be cautious and cover yourself with a face mask and also carry your own disinfectant. This way you can keep your hands clean by using the sanitizer regularly, especially after coming in contact with foreign surfaces.

You should thoroughly wash your hands with soap or use a sanitizer when:

  • You come home after being outside
  • You are handling and opening the items you bought
  • You cough or sneeze into your hands

If you use a tissue, dispose it off the right away.

Also, if you use reusable shopping bags, always throw them in the wash after you use them.

Go out alone to shop

Avoid going out in groups, with your family members or your spouse, as it will make it harder for everyone to maintain social distance. Go alone and come back quickly. This will also reduce the risk of people in your family getting infected.

Take Social distancing seriously

Remember the most important rule of keeping your distance. Stay 6 feet away from other people and make sure they stay away too. If you feel someone closing in, remind them to maintain distance. Safety comes first.

Sanitize your phone too

We take our phones with us everywhere we go but hardly remember to clean it. The surface of a phone can get filthy and collect germs. Don’t forget to wipe the screen clean with a disinfectant after putting it on random surfaces. 

Avoid going out if you are more prone to falling sick

Some people have a higher chance of getting ill than others. These at-risk people should avoid going out at all costs. This group includes people who are old, especially over 65, people with heart or lung diseases, and people with diabetes. Try to get someone else to help you out and shop for you. Staying inside will minimize risk for you and others around you. 

Coronavirus is a highly contagious disease. A pandemic is a time when you should remain as cautious as you can to avoid the risk of transmission and getting affected with the virus. Maintaining personal hygiene and following the guidelines set by WHO and your local authorities is very important to battle this. Doing so will help you and your loved ones stay safe and healthy. 

Let’s flatten the curve together!

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