COVID-19 has had a huge impact on our way of life, both as individuals and as a society. Loss of life, long-lasting sickness, destruction of livelihoods, and threats to our own safety have all been part of the fallout.
So, it’s up to all of us to take necessary and sensible steps to stay healthy. There’s also a lot of false information out there as to how we can achieve that. So, what are the real steps you can take to keep healthy? Here’s a guide how to do just that.
- Live healthily to boost your immune system, through eating healthily (enough fruit and vegetables) and exercising regularly. It is important to try to get 6 to 8 hours of sleep per night too. Make sure you also have an outlet for stress.
- Get the flu vaccine and make sure that any chronic health conditions are under control.
- Avoid smoke or smoking.
- Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently. Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing, or having been in a public place.
- If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- To the extent possible, avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public places, like elevator buttons, door handles, handrails, and trolley handles. Use a tissue or your sleeve to cover your hand or finger if you must touch something.
- Make use of antibacterial wipes to disinfect trolley and basket handles when shopping. Wipes are available at most large retailers.
- Avoid touching your face, especially your nose, eyes, and mouth.
- Practice good respiratory hygiene. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, or sneeze into your elbow.
- When greeting others, avoid hugging, shaking hands and kissing.
- Clean and disinfect your home to remove germs. Practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces, including tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks and cell phones.
- Keep space between yourself and others.
- Avoid contact with people who are unwell.
- Avoid crowded environments, especially in closed-in settings with little air circulation.
- Limit social interaction.
- Stay home as much as possible to further lower your risk of being exposed.
- Have enough household items and groceries on hand so that you will be prepared to stay at home for long periods of time. Consider ways of having food brought to your house through family, social, or commercial networks.
- If possible, avoid public transport. If you must make use of public transport, try to distance yourself from others and wear a scarf to cover your mouth and nose.
- Avoid all non-essential travel especially cruise and air travel.
- Have a plan for if you fall sick. Contact your healthcare provider ahead of time to ask about medications to have on hand in case there is an outbreak of COVID-19 in your community, and you need to stay home for a prolonged period.
- Telephone ahead rather than spending unnecessary time in hospital.
- Stay home when you are sick.
What to do if you suspect you have contracted the Corona virus.
The symptoms of the coronavirus are like the common cold or flu.
According to the World Health Organisation the most common symptoms, and the percentage of people who had them, are as follows:
- Fever: 88%
- Dry cough: 68%
- Fatigue: 38%
- Coughing up thick phlegm, from the lungs: 33%
- Shortness of breath: 19%
- Bone or joint pain: 15%
- Sore throat: 14%
- Headache: 14%
- Chills: 11%
- Nausea or vomiting: 5%
- Stuffy nose: 5%
- Diarrhoea: 4%
- Coughing up blood: 1%
- Swollen eyes: 1%
This is a comprehensive list of verified steps and symptoms. There may be additional information that will emerge, especially as the virus mutates. For now, though, live within these rules, and you’ll stand the best chance of not contracting the virus.
Above all, stay safe!
If you need support, advice, or counselling, please contact us on 0861 GOLIFE (465433) or SMS “Wellbeing” to 43821 or click here to visit the website for more information.