• 24 hour numbers
  • Urgent Care
    • 617-253-1311
  • Urgent Mental Health Concerns
    • 617-253-2916
  • Violence Prevention & Response
    • 617-253-2300
  • All contact numbers
  • Close

Living with someone who’s self-quarantining

March 10, 2020: Do you live with someone who has been asked to self-quarantine because of possible exposure to COVID-19? What does that mean for you and other members of your household?

Self-quarantining in a living space that is shared with others can be difficult, but it’s not impossible.

Even though the person you live with does not have symptoms, self-quarantining means separating as much as possible from other people sharing the living space. They should stay in their own bedroom and, if possible, use a bathroom that is not shared with others. If there’s only one bathroom, set up a bathroom rotation in which the self-quarantining individual uses the bathroom last and then disinfects it thoroughly (read more about proper disinfection techniques). If the self-quarantining individual needs to come out of their room for any reason, they should wash their hands and wear a mask. 

Clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces frequently. This includes countertops, doorknobs, light switches, and bathroom surfaces. Wash your hands frequently.

Do not share any items with the self-quarantining individual. This includes dishes, drinking glasses, silverware, towels, phones, and remote controls. If possible, use a dishwasher to clean and dry dishes and silverware used by the self-quarantining individual. If this is not possible, wash them by hand using detergent and warm water. Dry them thoroughly, using a separate dishtowel.

The self-quarantining individual should vigilantly self-monitor for possible symptoms. But as long as all members of your household are following these self-quarantine and hygiene guidelines closely, you can continue to participate in your normal activities outside of the home while someone at home is self-quarantining. You should simply follow the same social distancing and hygiene guidelines we’re recommending for everyone at this time. 

This news story has not been updated since the date shown. Information contained in this story may be outdated. For current information about MIT Medical’s services, please see relevant areas of the MIT Medical website.