Are you prepared for an extended quarantine? Many people might think so, but you may not have thought of exactly how to prepare your home for an emergency in quarantine. Quarantine will help you reduce your risk of COVID-19, but quarantine preparation means thinking every scenario you might need to be ready for at home. When making quarantine grocery trips, you need to make sure to stock up on the essentials to meet the needs of every family member at your home on a long term basis. Here’s what you need to have on hand for an extended quarantine.
1. Hygiene Products
While most people are stocking up on canned goods and non-perishable foods, they sometimes forget about the necessity of basic hygiene products. Not only will hygiene products keep you clean, but they will also help retain a sense of normalcy for your household when they are still able to use their favorite shampoo and conditioner. Consider creating a list of your hygiene products that you use in a typical month and try to double up. An important part of an effective quarantine is reducing the need for unnecessary grocery trips. When thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency, it is important to ensure that you have the items that you use daily, such as deodorant, hand soap, shampoo and conditioner, and toothpaste.
It is important to maintain the oral health of your family during quarantine. The last thing you want is to take trips to the dentist to fill cavities during a pandemic. Although dentists offices are taking measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19, any trip into the public is taking a risk. On top of that, many people struggle to afford dentist trips if they are unemployed or uninsured. Therefore, you should always make sure you have toothpaste, back up toothbrushes, and dental floss during quarantine. In addition, if anyone in your family has specific oral needs like a water pick or medicated mouthwash, make sure you are stocking up.
2. Maintenance Tools
Desperate times call for desperate measures. In a pandemic, you really want to be reducing your interaction with people outside your immediate family in every situation possible. This might mean turning toward DIY fixes instead of calling a plumber or other maintenance services. By doing this, you are reducing both you and your family’s risks of contracting COVID-19 greatly. In the times of a worldwide pandemic, every interaction counts. This might mean doing a little bit of research on how to make simple fixes around the house. One thing that may help is making a list of common problems in the house and looking up what you need to fix them. Then, you can have supplies on hand in case you might need them.
Plumbing problems are common occurrences that can sometimes be fixed yourself. Clogged drains happen often, particularly in large families that share bathrooms. Consider buying drain cleaner that can help erode build-up of hair and shampoo. Also, it might be helpful to keep a drain snake on hand. To prevent clogged drains, you can buy hair catches that can be placed over the drank to prevent hair from becoming clogged. These things might be helpful to have on hand, as well as simple tools like screwdrivers and wrenches that can help fix a leaky sink. Even if you’re not very experienced, it can be better to do research and try to attempt a fix rather than immediately calling a plumber.
If possible, consider investing in a generator. When thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency, a generator can be considered priceless. In many worst-case-scenario situations, generators can save families from experiencing extreme cold or extreme heat by keeping the air conditioning units running. In addition, they can keep fridge freezers running and prevent you from losing hundreds of dollars of food. During the pandemic, many members of maintenance staffs have been furloughed in an attempt to lessen the spread of a pandemic, therefore cutting the workforce. During outages, consider that a smaller staff is working to put the power back on for the same amount of people. You might be dealing with outages for an extremely long time, making a generator invaluable. If possible, buying a generator is a very good idea during a pandemic.
If your home has a furnace or boiler, make sure you are stocked up on heating oil. Heating oil delivery companies may be working with a reduced staff, so it may be helpful to take matters into your hands. Consider housing an extended supply of oil in your garage or shed if possible. Heating oil doesn’t ignite, so it is safe to have a small reserve of oil in your home. When thinking about how to prepare your home in an emergency, heat is a vital essential in colder months. If possible, try to have enough oil to heat your home so that you won’t need a delivery in a few months. That way, you are again reducing your interactions with work staff that may have been exposed to the virus.
Although it is useful to reduce your interaction with maintenance crews, sometimes it is absolutely necessary. If you must have maintenance staff in your home, speak on the phone with them beforehand about your concerns about keeping a safe distance. Develop a plan with them about how to interact safely to reduce your interactions as much as possible. Ask if they could wear masks if they are not already doing so, and request as little staff as possible in your home. Try to keep a six foot distance when possible, and sanitize and disinfect all surfaces of your home after they leave. Remember that the virus can live on metal surfaces the longest. Disinfectants will help clean the surface and reduce viral particles as much as possible, so make sure to have them on hand. If you follow these precautions, your chances of becoming infected with the virus will be lessened greatly.
3. Non-Perishable Foods
Having a stockpile of non-perishable foods is absolutely necessary in the times of a pandemic. Perishable foods are unreliable due to reduced work forces in food production companies around the world. Meat and dairy shortages is just one example of the reduction in food availability due to the pandemic. When making grocery trips, try to buy as much non-perishable food items as possible. Some grocery stores put limits on the number of certain food items you can buy in one trip. If you must, you can shop at multiple grocery stores to get what you need. Part of how to prepare your home for an emergency in a pandemic is being prepared to stay inside for an extended period of time.
When thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency, food should be near the top of your priority list. The Department of Homeland Security recommends that you have enough food to last each family member at least 72 hours. This, of course, is a bare minimum. If you can, try to stockpile enough food to last your family at least two weeks. In a quarantine, it is essential to try to leave the house as little as possible. Therefore, you should buy foods that can help make your trips less frequent. Specialty produce and fresh meat should be limited, replaced with canned and dry goods. Oats, rice, and popcorn are great options because they can last for years. Another good option is to freeze meats, as they will last much longer. However, remember that if your freezer becomes unavailable, you need to cook them before they go bad.
Many people don’t prioritize stockpiling water during quarantine, but that is something that is absolutely necessary. Unopened, commercially bottled water is the most reliable source during a crisis. The CDC recommends keeping a gallon a day for each family member and pet if possible, and to try to work your way up to a two week supply. If commercially bottled tap water isn’t possible to obtain, you can consider bottling your own tap water. However, you must replace water you’ve bottled yourself every six months. Some people even keep bleach that can help disinfect water, although you must be sure to buy the correct products to safely disinfect it. If you’re thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency, keeping plenty of water on hand is a must.
One of the most important things to consider when stockpiling non-perishable goods is nutrition. You do not want to waste space in your pantry with foods that are of little nutritional value. Consider your core food groups and try to come up with a non-perishable food for each one. Peanut butter, nuts, and canned meat are excellent sources of protein. Powdered milk will last a very long time compared to traditional refrigerated milk. Dried fruit and power bars are also very nutritious options. Also, consider keeping sports drinks to help replace electrolytes if anyone gets sick.
First aid is a vital part of quarantine preparation when thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency. You should create a first aid kit prepared for a variety of events and injuries. It should include bandages, band-aids, antibiotic ointment, scissors, tweezers, and gauze to treat minor injuries. In addition to preparing a first aid kit, you should be prepared to do some research on the best ways to treat minor injuries to avoid causing infections or making minor injuries worse instead of better. There are plenty of online resources to learn basic first aid for minor burns, scrapes, and sprains.
In addition to minor injury preparation, you should be prepared to treat minor illnesses. In particular, you should keep anti-inflammatory pain medication on hand as well as cough medicine and decongestants. It is also recommended to keep medications on hand to treat minor stomach illnesses as well as electrolytes. A thermometer is an essential as well, as anyone who comes down with a fever should be attempted to be kept separate from the rest of the family. Fever-reducers are a vital part of your first-aid kit as well. Consider keeping vitamins as well to keep your family’s immune systems running in top shape!
When making a first aid kit, consider the individual needs of each family member. If you are living with an elderly family member, keep whatever is needed to provide correct elderly care. This might consist of hearing aid batteries or items to care for and clean dentures. If you live with someone with asthma, always make sure to keep a spare inhaler somewhere that all family members are able to locate. If someone in your family has a severe allergy, ensure that you keep antihistamines and an Epi-pen if they use one. Knowing all necessary items to keep your family safe is an extremely important part of how to prepare your home for an emergency.
Of course, when thinking about health, mental health is a significant component. If any member of your family takes medication for their mental health, make sure that they have continued access to it. In times of isolation, you should always have something to keep your mind occupied. Consider keeping board games, books, and toys on hand for children. Mental health should not be dismissed when thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency.
It is undoubtedly difficult to prepare for quarantine, but it is something that is necessary for the health of everyone around the world. It is important to keep a level head when thinking about how to prepare your home for an emergency in quarantine. One of the most significant things that will help your preparation is to always remember the individual needs of the people in your family. This will help you be ready for any emergency situation!