The pandemic is definitely out of control at present. This second wave is something that no one even imagined. It has scared most of us. The hospitals are full, there is scarcity of oxygen, scarcity of important medications and the whole nation seems to be in a ‘panic’ mode. There is a long waiting even for testing. As you notice, with lack of hospital beds, patients with mild symptoms need to opt for home quarantine. These are difficult times and we need to ensure humanity and human beings are the winners in this war.
Now, home quarantine with mild symptoms does not mean locking up yourself at home and waiting for the quarantine period to get over. You need to be aware and cautious and follow the doctor’s advice. You “DO” need the treatment.
Some of the practices adapted can expedite the recovery process and help in also protecting the other family members. Few tips to strictly follow are
- Right Diet
- Good amount of quality sleep
- A positive attitude
- Good hydration
The general norm followed by almost all the patients is 14 day quarantine. It is better to give yourself some more time to recover well. To ensure a ‘healthy’ recovery, it is safer to opt for 28 day quarantine. This not only helps in recovering nicely but can also keep your family safe from any risk of the infection. Even those who are in institutional quarantine should extend this after they come home. This is playing absolutely safe.
Vulnerable individuals, like those with pre-existing conditions or those above the age of 55 and those suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, COPD (chronic obstructive Pulmonary disorder), liver or kidney diseases, or those on immunosuppressant’s or steroids need treatment with additional care. This should be followed in consultation with medical experts. These patients need constant monitoring of the oxygen saturation. It is advisable to keep a pulse oximeter at home. This is important not only for the above listed patients but all those with symptoms of the virus. If, at any time, the oxygen levels dip below the 92% mark, and the patient is facing problem breathing, it needs to be taken as a ‘red’ alert and medical help is required.
Anything that is known to boost the immunity is helpful. Sleeping in the prone position is advised for the patients. This is sleeping with the chest and the face down. Patients are advised against eating ice-creams and any type of junk food. Excessive consumption of alcohol tends to bring down the immunity. Simple exercises and yoga can make a difference.
Those with a normal ECG can be prescribed a five-day course of hydroxychloroquine along with azithromycin and Vitamin C, Vitamin D and supplements of zinc. It is important not to self-medicate but to take the advice of your doctor. You can also seek advice of homeopaths or Ayurvedic experts. Those with pre-existing conditions need to avoid this.
It is very important the primary caregiver or the family member protects himself/herself by ensuring proper protection. These people can be prescribed HCQS (hydroxychloroquine) once a week, for a minimum of 3 weeks. This needs to be done only after consultation with your doctor. This is considered to be a good prophylactic and has been prescribed to health care workers and medical staff during the first wave of this pandemic.
You need to be aware that even patients who are asymptomatic can spread the virus. It is, thus, important that caregivers and family members strictly practice hand washing and social distancing norms. It is advised that the patient is not served food in the same utensils used by the other family members. Disposable utensils work well in such a situation.
The virus stops multiplying only after the 10th day in the patient’s body. Till then this can be easily transmitted. It has been noticed that patients, in many hospitals, are discharged after the 10th day.
Listed below are some examples of care taken by patients at home
- Taking steam three times in a day
- Sleeping on the stomach or the side
3.Eating healthy meals, boiled eggs, fruits like orange, apples, kiwis, vegetables, coconut water and turmeric milk.
- Cutting down on screen time.
- Sleeping well
- Talking to friends
- Walking for 5 to 10 minutes in the house
- Ensure you have the phone numbers of your doctors handy
- Check your temperature and oxygen saturation every 2 hours.
A final word of advice, avoid too much COVID-19 news. Instead, concentrate on keeping yourself happy by watching movies or other serials. You can also listen to good music or read a book. Make sure you stay connected with your loved ones. Give yourself all the care and love to ensure a healthy mental state.