Monday, March 16, 2020

COVID-19 Fake News: Bogus "cure" rumors, debunked here

The bogus  home cures for COVID-19 are showing up all over.

Fortunately most wonʻt hurt you, and some might even ease symptoms a little, but not cure you. That said, some of these crazy "cures" can kill you.

Hereʻs one lie: Gargling with salt water will wash the disease out of your throat and youʻll be better. Or gargling with warm salt water and vinegar will kill the virus.

Simple logic reminds you that the virus isnʻt only in your throat. Itʻs also in your nasal passages, in your lungs, in your blood, and even in feces. Gargling isnʻt going to have any impact on most of those locations.

Gargling with or drinking bleach, which some have suggested, has the additional downside of being dangerous as well as ineffective. It can burn your throat and stomach, it can collapse your blood pressure, it can put you into a coma. Donʻt do it. Hereʻs some information from the New York State health office. Also, wiping or spraying down your body with a bleach solution may clean your skin, but it wonʻt have an impact on the disease inside you.

Eating garlic or drinking garlic soup might keep people away from you due to the smell—which is an interesting take on social distancing—but thereʻs no evidence it helps with the disease. Here is that one and a few other myths from the World Health Organizationʻs website. 

Drinking large amounts of alcohol or water wonʻt prevent or stop the disease. The World Health Organizationʻs twitter feed debunks these theories. 

There are predatory personalities online, on radio and on TV who promote bogus cures of several kinds. Often, youʻll find theyʻre selling their special "cure." Theyʻre getting rich on the backs of the sick. Some have already been told by government agencies to stop with the fake cures.

Fortunately, there are several websites that are actively responding to malicious and erroneous medical information about this outbreak. Hereʻs one.

The upshot: donʻt do stupid stuff just because some stranger (or even a friend) told you it might work.
© Jan TenBruggencate 2020

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