With the increase in coronavirus cases worldwide, the total number of infections has surpassed six million in the past two months. Even though a number of countries have lifted their nationwide lockdowns, health agencies are still encouraging people to follow preventive measures in order to cut down the risk of a second wave of coronavirus.
However, due to the constant fear of contracting SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the coronavirus infection, people are taking ‘additional’ steps to ensure they do not catch the infection after returning to work or while heading outdoors now that restrictions have eased.
One of these measures includes taking various supplementary medicines, that are believed to help in preventing or even treating the coronavirus infection by a vast majority of people.
According to the medical community, there is no vigorous scientific investigation to show any of the popular supplements can actually help in avoiding infections.
In fact, many of the supplements for COVID-19 as well as ‘miracle cures’ that claimed to treat the infection in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic can have the opposite effects and cause damage to health which is why the U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent warnings letter to manufacturers of such medicines.
The prevalence of such medicines, as well as myths that encourage their use can be dangerous as taking supplements for COVID-19 without prescription, may pave the way for other health issues.
The World Health Organization had already addressed the issue of misinformation and myths regarding COVID-19 even before the virus was declared a global pandemic.
The health agency stated how widespread false information about the coronavirus infection can prompt people to take supplements for COVID-19 or even random medicines and drugs solely after their popularity or endorsement by popular figures.
The popularity of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine was primarily due to the president of the US, Donald Trump, who has continued to repeatedly mention the drugs and even claimed he had been taking them to prevent COVID-19 regardless of the various warning about associated side effects from the medical community.
Consequently, many people have too neglected warnings by health agencies and bought as well as used the drug as there has been a shortage of hydroxychloroquine in the market since March.
Trump’s endorsement of the drugs has caused multiple health problems ranging from people taking them and risking developing heart-related conditions that have been noted in clinical trials that tested hydroxychloroquine to people having health complications due to inability to find the drug for managing issues such as lupus.
In addition, for health care workers, the popularity of hydroxychloroquine meant an increase in patient’s demand to be treated with the drug.
The multifaceted effects of hydroxychloroquine are the primary example of popularizing and endorsing medically unapproved drugs and supplements for COVID-19 as people are bound to follow and use immediately after.
To date, there is no evidence to show any of the drugs, with the exception of Remdesivir which too, cannot be used without a prescription, may offer any benefits for coronavirus treatment.
In fact, Remdesivir has also been only approved for coronavirus infection treatment in a few countries and is noted to have limited effects only.
Therefore, taking supplements such as Vitamin C supplements, Vitamin D supplements, and zinc is not recommended unless they are prescribed by a doctor. Secondly, no herbal remedy, miracle cures, and diets can treat the coronavirus infection either.
Avoid taking any medicine for prevention as well as treatment of COVID-19 at home. In case any symptoms of the infection such as dry coughing, flu, pressure in the chest, and sneezing appear, visit a coronavirus health facility as soon as possible.