What to do if you test positive for COVID-19 this winter

9 ways to avoid getting sick this winter. Drink plenty Keep it clean Sleep soundly Have some yogurt everyday Load up on garlic Take vitamins and probiotics Exercise regularly Ditch the booze Stay calm

Georgia set a single-day coronavirus record last week with 6,376 positive COVID-19 cases and hospitals are bracing for a surge in cases.

With that in mind, it’s important to know what steps to take should you test positive for the disease caused by the coronavirus this winter.

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Here are some things you should know about how to handle a positive case, which could range from asymptomatic or require emergency help, according to health experts who spoke to NPR.

Isolate yourself as soon as possible

Studies have shown the importance of swift isolation following a positive coronavirus test and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently shortened the guidelines for isolation from 14 days to 10 and seven days with a negative test result.

According to a press release for a recent study that showed viral shedding for the coronavirus peaks at the 10-14-day mark, transmission “can be effectively reduced by immediate identification, isolation and quarantine of people who show symptoms of the disease.”

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Those you’ve been in close contact with need to isolate too — including people you live with

Your positive COVID-19 test means those you’ve been around have been exposed to the novel virus, too, so they’ll also need to isolate.

The CDC considers close contact being within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes within 24-hours. This begins two days prior to illness onset — or two days before a test specimen has been collected in the case of asymptomatic individuals — until the time of isolation.

Stay aware of your symptoms

COVID-19 can be mild, moderate or severe for people who have symptoms or you may have no symptoms at all.

Among the most common symptoms for people who have been hospitalized with the disease are fever, fatigue, a dry cough and a loss of appetite, according to WebMD. The website notes that if you experience trouble breathing, constant pain or pressure in your chest, bluish lips or face or sudden confusion, you should seek medical help immediately.

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Rest and stay hydrated, but movement is still important

Since the coronavirus is a viral infection, it’s important to follow the same guidance for recovery as you would with any other kind ― resting and drinking fluids. UC Davis Health recommends consuming water or herbal tea and avoiding beverages containing caffeine and alcohol. You can also eat soups.

“You don’t want to overwork yourself but avoid strict bed rest – we don’t want patients to be totally sedentary because we know that patients who move around seem to do better,” Roger Alvarez, a pulmonologist and professor of clinical medicine at the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine told NPR.

Remember your mental health

Isolating can be tough, so it’s important to look after your mental health as well as your physical health.

While you can’t connect with your family in person, you can still take advantage of virtual gatherings, if you’re feeling well enough. Additionally, spend time moving if you can, which can aid mental health. But don’t over exert yourself.

“Any amount of exercise has benefits,” Dr. Daniel Montero, a Mayo Clinic sports medicine physician told the health care company’s news network.

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