As the COVID-19 novel coronavirus epidemic rages on, more and more people around the globe are becoming increasingly mindful of their general health.
The epidemic, like any major devastation involving millions of people, has taken a toll on the mental and emotional well-being of thousands, not to mention making good physical health a priority as well. Here are some expert-sanctioned tips on staying safe and healthy during the outbreak.
According to the World Health Organisation, there are a number of things you can do to protect yourself against COVID-19 infection. The measures currently recommended by the WHO include:
- Washing your hands as often as possible. The WHO recommends washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content to kill pathogens.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. This can help to reduce your chances of contracting the virus if your hands are contaminated.
- Maintaining social distance. It is advised (or legally required, in some places) that you stay at least 1 meter or 3 feet away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing or could be a coronavirus carrier.
- Seek medical care as soon as you can if needed. It’s advisable to stay home if you have COVID-19-like symptoms and to call your doctor from there for further advice. Always follow the directions of your local health authorities.
Existing mental health conditions may worsen under the pressure of the epidemic. If you have a pre-existing mental health condition or illness and feel that you are struggling, always contact a qualified professional for advice! Some other tips for maintaining good mental health include:
- Limit your exposure to the news. If news media is making you feel anxious, stop watching, and come back to it another time. Avoid fake news where you can.
- Connect with friends and family. Reaching out over email, Facebook, or a social messaging app like Whatsapp can help to prevent feelings of loneliness or isolation while you are in quarantine.
- Prioritize self-care. Take some time every day to pamper yourself and see to your needs. Do things that make you feel relaxed and nurtured, like playing the best pokies online games or reading.
- Practice meditation and mindfulness. These practices are proven to promote calmness and tranquillity, making this an excellent time to start them.
Looking after your immune system is important at this time, especially as immuno-compromised people are more likely to be infected with COVID-19. You can ensure that your immunity is working well by:
- Following a healthy diet. Limit refined sugar, processed foods, caffeine, and salt. Focus instead on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean sources of protein, and drinking plenty of clean water.
- Turning to supplements. Vitamins and nutrients like zinc, vitamin C, vitamin D3, and magnesium are crucial for the correct functioning of your immune cells. Be sure to top up on these nutrients, either by taking bioavailable supplements or by optimizing your diet.
- Exercising. Exercise will help to keep your mental, physical, and emotional health in check at this time. Opt for simple exercises that can be completed at home, such as yoga, tai chi, moderate cardio, or Zumba.