Life has changed dramatically for all of us since the COVID-19 pandemic began, but if you have tested positive for the virus and experienced any or all of the myriad of possible symptoms, you understand how serious it is and how difficult recovery can be.
The following tips are important to keep in mind as you recover:
- First and foremost, know when to seek emergency medical care. Among the symptoms that warrant immediate medical assistance are:
- Difficulty breathing
- Relentless pain and/or pressure in the chest
- New confusion or disorientation
- The inability to wake up or stay awake
- A bluish tint to the face or lips
Call 911 or the nearest E/R and tell the operator that the care needed is for someone with COVID-19.
- Gather necessary supplies. For mild symptoms, you’ll want to have the following supplies on hand:
- OTC pain medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen
- Pedialyte or other rehydration fluids
- Plenty of healthy food choices
- A pulse oximeter to check oxygen levels
- A thermometer
- A humidifier
- Ask about prescription options. Your doctor may want to prescribe medication for more severe symptoms, such as nausea or a persistent cough. Don’t wait until symptoms worsen, but talk with your doctor as soon as the need arises.
- Maximize breathing. There are several ways to ease breathing and help alleviate chest tightness and coughing:
- Avoid dry air; use a humidifier, or run a hot shower and breathe in the steam.
- Try lying on your stomach instead of your back or side.
- Use an inhaler if recommended by the doctor.
- Implement breathing exercises, such as:
- Breathe in deeply and hold for a count of five, and then breathe out. Repeat five times, and on the sixth time after exhaling, cough hard. Cycling through this exercise twice, followed by lying on your stomach and taking slightly deeper breaths for ten minutes, several times a day, may help.
- Pay attention to your mental health. The stress, fear, and anxiety of a COVID-19 diagnosis can wreak havoc on your emotional health, and if left unattended, can lead to panic attacks, depression, and other serious health concerns. Seek professional counseling services to work through your feelings, and also incorporate any of the following types of activities:
- Listening to soothing music
- Talking with trusted family and friends
- Watching uplifting movies or TV shows
- Know that recovery is not a linear process. Recovering from COVID-19 may feel like two steps forward and one step back at times. It’s not uncommon for symptoms to begin to subside and then suddenly reappear, for a fever to come and go, or for the effects of the virus to linger for weeks or even months.
Having a trusted home care partner, like CareWorks Health Services, can make a world of difference in recovering from COVID-19. We’re here to help with services such as:
- Companionship to alleviate loneliness and isolation, and help keep spirits up
- Preparing nutritious meals and ensuring sufficient hydration
- Maintaining a clean and sanitized home environment
- Running errands, such as picking up groceries and prescriptions
- Providing medication reminders
- Helping with personal care needs, such as taking a shower or bath, getting dressed, etc.
- And much more
Always in adherence to the most up-to-date recommended safety protocols, including wearing personal protective equipment, proper hand washing, sanitizing and disinfecting, and more, our caregivers are available for as much or as little assistance as needed, allowing you all the time you need to rest and recover.