Health officials recommend taking the same precautions for COVID-19 as you would for avoiding colds and the flu:
Get the COVID-19 vaccine if you are eligible.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or use the inside of your elbow.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Stay home when you are sick.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily, like phones, tables, doorknobs, light switches, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
The CDC believes that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear 2–14 days after being exposed to the virus:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
If you are planning a trip overseas, keep an eye on the news and check the CDC's Information for Travelers.
Find COVID-19 information in other languages.
COVID-19 and pets
The virus that causes COVID-19 can spread from people to animals during close contact, but the risk is low. For more information on what you should know about COVID-19 and pets, visit the CDC's website.