The notion of quarantine has several uses. In general, the term is used to name a period of forty days (although, sometimes, it can also be a temporal compendium of forty months or forty years ).
Specifically, it is considered that quarantine is a term that began to be used forcefully in the 14th century as a result of the advance of the Black Death. Thus, at that time those who had been infected by it and had managed to survive it was established that they should spend forty days in isolation before being able to relate to the rest of the citizens again.
Another possibility is that quarantine refers to the forty equally sized portions into which something can be divided; to a thing formed by forty components or elements ; or any other phenomenon linked to the number forty.
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The most common use of quarantine, however, is associated with the isolation or confinement to which a human being or an animal is confined for health reasons. It is expected that, being isolated, the living being in question does not infect others and, thus, an infectious disease does not spread. What must be taken into account is that, despite the denomination, said isolation can last more or less than forty days.
Throughout history, various amounts of people have been quarantined in the face of certain epidemics. Quarantine, for example, was put into practice in the face of the advance of the black plague and leprosy.
At a colloquial level, the word quarantine is a term widely used among pregnant women. And it is that with it comes to define the forty days that every woman, after giving birth, must have to recover physically and mentally after the enormous effort she has made to bring her baby into the world.
Among the most common advice that medical professionals give to women who are in that period are the following:
- They must take daily care of the stitches and sutures they have received during childbirth.
- It is advisable that you do not have sexual intercourse until those forty days have passed, so that your body fully recovers.
- It is important that they take iron, either through certain foods or through the medications that the doctor prescribes. And it is that during childbirth they have made a great effort and have lost blood, so their blood levels are very low.
- It is also recommended that they take vitamin B, so that the tissues can recover much better and more quickly.
- Attention must be paid to what is known as postpartum depression, which must be treated by the relevant professional.
In computing, quarantine is associated with an action carried out by antivirus programs to prevent the files of a computer from becoming infected with a file that is infected with a virus. In this way, the file in question is quarantined and isolated from the others.
“Cuarentena”, finally, is the Latin American title of the American film “Quarantine”. It is a reversal of a Spanish film ( “Rec” ) that shows how a strange infection affects the inhabitants of a building, who are locked in the building and placed in quarantine.