There's a lot of misinformation about the current SARS-CoV-2 outbreak being shared in the silos of messaging apps. This means it's harder to search for them in an attempt to verify their validity. People who share them aren't doing it to cause harm, quite the opposite, they are sharing them because they believe it will help their friends and loved ones.
Various claims about drinking hot water, gargling with a hot water saline solution, and going into the sun are all things that hasn't proven to do anything in terms of avoiding getting the virus, or alleviating it if you are already infected.
If your friends or family share these things with you on chats or email, please tell them that none of these things are proven to work, and that the consequences of following the advice from these copy/paste jobs vary from mostly harmless (drink hot drinks), to potentially harmful to you or others (if you have a runny nose, then you don't have coronavirus).
There's a few things you can do to respond in a way that can help convince them these statements are not true, and that they should stop sharing them as if they are. One of them is pointing them to one of the many sites that are debunking the claims with supported material and science:
- Fullfact.org is a UK charity that figths misinformation online, and they have an excellent section debunking various coronavirus claims
- Snopes has an extensive section on the various claims on origins and treaments of COVID-19
- WHO has a section on busting COVID-19 myths which is highly recommended
- WIRED magazine has a good article on how to curb the spread of the rumors
Stay safe, stay home and help stop the rumors and the outbreak from spreading.