Health experts: Quarantine now before seeing select family members this Thanksgiving
LOS ANGELES - Thanksgiving is exactly two weeks away, and health experts are offering recommendations on how to gather safely with a small group for the holiday.
Epidemiologist and Professor from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, Anne Rimoin, said it is important to start quarantining immediately [Thursday, November 12] to give yourself a 14 day window.
"If you want to be able to see a few select members of your family on Thanksgiving, the best thing you can do is to start quarantining right now because right now, marks two weeks before Thanksgiving. There's a 2 to 14 day window where you may show symptoms after being exposed," she said.
Rimoin said small gatherings are contributing to the spike in Covid-19 cases across the state.
RELATED: California, Oregon, Washington issue travel advisories asking people to self-quarantine for 14 days
"We know this virus has been transmitted through events just like a Thanksgiving dinner. In fact, last week alone, 10 percent of the COVID positive cases that were reported in LA County had been to a gathering of ten people or more," said Rimoin.
Dr. Michael Hirt from the Center for Integrative Medicine said it will likely be difficult for people to quarantine this time around.
"I think it's been really hard for Americans to quarantine. There's been a tremendous amount of pandemic fatigue. People need to get out. Who's going to pick up all the fixings for the Thanksgiving dinner?" said Hirt.
However, Dr. Hirt recommends limiting any exposure to the virus and avoiding certain activities.
"You really want to limit the number of bubbles that you enter. This is probably not a good time to be going to a friend's house for a TV evening on a Saturday. This is probably not the time to be going to a friend's house for an evening on a Saturday. This is probably not the time to go into a small, confined retail shop," he said.
He said outdoor gatherings are best, but if the weather is an issue, he has an idea for a safe indoor gathering.
Get your top stories delivered daily! Sign up for FOX 11’s Fast 5 newsletter. And, get breaking news alerts in the FOX 11 News app. Download for iOS or Android.
"What I recommend is rather than have people bring over jello molds, tell them instead to bring their home air filter with a fresh filter inside, and if everybody brings over their own air filter and you set them up in the bathroom, the hallways, the kitchen, the dining area, run them on full blast, run that air, I think everyone can have a safe and healthy Thanksgiving," said Hirt.
He said it's important to be mindful of people who fall into the categories of being older, overweight or having other health issues.
"Make sure it's [the environment] is safe inside as well as outside particularly if you have people who are vulnerable," Hirt said.
Hirt also recommends boosting your immune system.
"[Eat] onions, garlic, oregano, thyme, rosemary. All of those are shown to have immune-boosting anti-viral properties. You can include those in your Thanksgiving dinner and you can also include those in your daily life," he said.
FOX 11's Mario Ramirez caught up with passengers to learn how they felt about the suggested quarantine period.
“The rising numbers are concerning just because a lot of people can be affected and lost their life potentially. I do agree with the two-week quarantine. I do think it’s a risk if you leave the state you’re in so I think the two-week quarantine can be a good thing," he said.
However, not all passengers agree.
"I’m not okay with it, but I’m going to travel because I want to live my life and continue to keep moving...hell, everybody's dying," another passenger said.
According to the CDC, celebrating Thanksgiving virtually or with members of your own household who are taking measures to reduce the spread of Covid-19, poses the lowest risk for spread.
Below are the CDC guidelines for celebrating the holidays:
FOX 11's Kelli Johnson and Mario Ramirez contributed to this report.