Everyone is worried about getting infected with this new COVID-19 virus. Yes it is a serious infection with no official cure, that’s true. But there are a couple of facts which must be considered as well … we will look at some of these ‘other aspects’ in this short article. We will also learn a few things which all of us can try doing at home while we are stuck at home under social lock-down.
Majority “will NOT get infected” by Covid-19.
Worst case projections say 30% Indians may get infected. That’s a big number yes, but it also means 70% won’t get infected even if worst comes to worst. 70% Indians is a much much larger number!!
Many people are recovering from the infection.
If 100 people get infected the with a 2% mortality rate, it means 98 people recovered and survived – correct? A large number of people actually ARE recovering even after getting Corona infected. Think about that, it gives us hope. Strong hope!
What do you do if you get sick?
If you get sick with a flu or fever, remember it may not be Corona. In our Indian climate, cold, flu, sinus, sore-throat etc are common ailments and we all tend to get it one time or another. But in case you get sick and if it is because of a Covid-19 infection, the global healthcare guideline is very clear : Self-Isolation and Home Care is the first step which is recommended.
So IF you get it Covid-19, the initial signs are flu like. You need to simply treat it at home at first. The way you would do this is the same way in which you normally treat your common flu. Rest, Hydrate, Warm gargle, Nasal neti, Paracetamol and cough syrups. You could also top up your multivitamins some Zinc to help boost your immunity. In 80% cases, the symptoms start to subside between day 8 and day 10. By day 11, the virus gets washed out with faeces as our body’s immunity takes over. So for most of us that is what is likely to happen. Only in severe cases, will you need to even visit a hospital.
As a disease Covid-19 may not be as severe as we fear. So then why is it that we are all feeling low and fearful in this time?
There is a sense of uncertainty and fear at this time. As we consume media and speak with those around us, there is no denying that most of us hearing things which make us feel scared and uncertain. What is troubling us more than the disease are the new things like social-distancing, the fear of stigma, the negative news on media platforms – be it television or social media. These are some of the things which are contributing to this overall feeling of fear and panic.
This experience of staying under lockdown due to a health issue is another thing which is completely new for our generation. And while we balance our responsibilities of work, family and our mobility restrictions, we also need to practice a few simple things in order to keep our minds happy and healthy. We, at Therappo have put together a short list after speaking with many people. Here are some easy-to-do stuff which you must certainly try at home.
I am choked with a severe media overdose
We asked people, which TV channel do you go to without ending up with a worried feeling, and the unanimous answer was “none”. Its true … people are watching news because they feel worried about this situation. But watching too much news all the time or too much of social media updates leaves us feeling even more worried. Some people found it better to follow a bit of self-discipline when it comes to news and social media updates too like fixing their TV times to one or twice a day for 30-40 minutes only. Same goes for social media too. Try and seek your information from reliable official sources only rather than believing social forwards and hearsay rumours.
We are getting involved to get busy
Whether you live in an apartment complex or in independent homes, remember the lockdown effects your neighbours too. While we practice self-isolation, its also a great opportunity to help and support them. Many people have connected with their senior-citizen neighbours and offered to assist them in simple things like grocery shopping etc so that senior members in your neighborhood do not need to step outside and expose themselves to any risk. So devote some of your time in activities which help and support people near you while still maintaining a healthy social distance.
Go find your best friend from school days
We all have many people with whom we’ve lost touch over the years, You may have tried to get back in touch but were always busy with work and your life. Well if you’re feeling isolated and cut-off, now may be a good time to start re-connecting? Don’t forget, everyone is just a phone call or a text message away.
Everyone is in the same boat, so talking does help
Feeling overwhelmed, anxious and even angry are some of the common emotional reactions in the current situation. We cannot avoid these, but whenever we feel these it’s a good idea to take the time to consciously notice what we are feeling. Some people said it helps them to write their feelings in a journal or doing something creative. However, we should remember that even your friends are facing the same things as you are, so it may also be helpful to talk to them or others. Talking about worries, stressful episodes with others does help us loosen some of the tightness.
A sense of no-control leads to stress and anxiety
This situation comes with a sense of helplessness. People who dealt with this did so by focusing only on those things which they could actually control, not the ones which are beyond control. Worrying about things which can’t be controlled leads to more helplessness and more anxiety. Look for things which we actually have control over such as what we eat, how we divide our awake time, what we speak and who we speak with.
A healthy body houses a healthy mind
It was delightful to see that a large majority of those we spoke with are slowly making a conscious attempt to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, staying hydrated and doing light exercises at home. Basic stretching exercises, walking within your apartment complex, pilates or yoga are all easy to practice within our homes. All of these are helping people cope with the state of their minds a lot. So motivate yourself to get up 30 minutes earlier tomorrow and get started.
Missing out on the beauty sleep? You won’t get this chance after lockdown
Good sleep every day is extremely important for our physical and mental health. Ask yourself, are you getting your 7 to 8 hours daily? If you have been using mobile phones before bed time, chances are that you aren’t getting your full sleep at night. Again, it helps to set some self-discipline here. Fix a time when you would silence your phone at least an hour before its your bed time.
Setting up a daily routine brings structure to our lives
Working from home or just being homebound isn’t all that bad. People have been findig lots of creative ways of keeping themselves busy while being at home. This is a new opportunity when you can spend a lot of time being indoors at home. So you can now take up that big cleaning that you have been postponing for ages, or cooking some new dishes which you never have or just catch up on reading or rearranging your home decor. There is a lot one can do and it would help to chalk out a daily routine plan on paper for the week first. Write down your goals and then work at it every day a little to achieve them. These little challenges go a long way in giving us a sense of control and purpose too.
Learning something new topped our list
Everyone has a list of things which they enjoy doing but never had enough time to do till now. This lockdown may finally give us the opportunity to get started. So instead of letting these days go by, get started with something using whatever tools you have near you. Painting, drawing, home gardening, music, home décor are all various things one can do … only with a little bit of imagination and patience.
Catch up on relaxation but keep your brain active
While its good to relax ourselves since we have the opportunity we should be careful to not become lazy and unproductive. Reading, writing or play indoor games like chess, Ludo, or Sudoku helps us keep our minds sharp.
This situation is such that it may take time for many of us to adapt to it. Its completely normal to feel lack of motivation, unable to concentrate and distraction etc at times like these. Instead of battling these feelings it is better to take the time and explore our own interests and ways at our own individual pace. As we can see there are tons of activities which we can surround ourselves with in order to stay happy, healthy and positive. The rest depends on yourself as you discover your own areas of interest during these next few weeks and months.
If you think this article was helpful, please share it with your friends and family members. We at Therappo would also love to hear how you and your loved ones are coping with this situation, so feel free to post comments here. And if you are having any problems coping up with social distancing and isolation, or if you find yourself overwhelmed please take a few minutes to see Therappo’s online counselors for an online session. These are live-video based one to one interactions which you may find helpful for yourself.