How To Stay Healthy

Keep Germs Away

There are several important steps you can take to help reduce your exposure to COVID-19 and prevent the spread of the disease.

  • Wash your hands often.
    • At least once an hour and before eating, scrub your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Sing “Happy Birthday” twice. Remember to wash your wrists, backs of your hands and under your nails. Dry your hands with a paper towel to remove residual germs, and use the paper towel to turn the faucet off (so not to recontaminate your hands). Throw the towel away.
    • Wash your hands immediately after coughing, sneezing or touching your nose, or if you have been in a public place.
    • If you don’t have soap and water, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol to scrub your hands, just as you would with soap and water.
  • Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze.
    • Use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose, and throw it away immediately. Then wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • No tissues? Cough or sneeze into your elbow or upper arm.
  • Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose and mouth.
    • Try to keep tissues on hand, and use these rather than touching directly.
  • Do not shake hands or fist bump with other people.
  • Avoid being around people who are sick.
    • If you are sick, stay home! If you must visit your health care provider or be around other people, wear a face mask.
    • NOTE: If you are not sick, you do NOT need to wear a face mask unless you are caring for someone who is sick and unable to wear one themselves. We must reserve essential materials for the health care providers who need them.
  • Clean and disinfect all frequently touched items and surfaces. 
    • phones and keyboards
    • remote controls, toys, frequently used appliances
    • tables, counter-tops, desk-tops
    • doorknobs, light switches
    • faucets, toilet seats, cabinet pulls
  • Keep at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others.
    • Reduce the risk of person-to-person spread.

For more information on prevention measures, click here.

 

Practice Social Distancing

Recommended by the CDC, social distancing means avoiding large gatherings and maintaining an appropriate distance, ideally 6 feet, from others. This practice is essential to stopping COVID-19 from spreading quickly and will help ensure that our health care system is not overwhelmed.

Flattening the curve
Mitigation efforts like social distancing can help to slow the outbreak, preventing hospitals from becoming overwhelmed and reducing the number of cases until scientists develop treatments and, eventually, a vaccine.

You can practice social distancing by:

  • Staying home unless absolutely necessary
  • Avoiding or postponing large gatherings
  • Limiting your interaction with others
  • Remaining a distance of 6 feet from others, whenever possible

Protect your mind as well as your body

It is natural to experience increased anxiety and stress because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It can be difficult to know how to react, especially as news continually changes. We encourage you to take notice and prioritize your mental health because it impacts your physical health, too.

Here are a few tips to relieve anxiety and stress:

  • Limit exposure to news.
    • It is important to stay updated on what is happening regarding COVID-19, but too much information can be overwhelming.
    • Set parameters that work for you. Consider checking the news 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the evening to ensure you have the most important, up-to-date information.
    • When you do check the news for information about COVID-19, travel restrictions and precautions, turn to reliable websites such as this one, the CDC, the NIH and the WHO.
  • Attend to your whole health.
    • Maintain a healthy diet that emphasizes fruits, vegetables and lean meats, and limits processed foods.
    • Stay hydrated: drink lots of fresh water.
    • Get at least 7-8 hours of regular sleep each night.
    • Go outdoors for fresh air or time in the sun. Aim for 30 minutes of exercise a day.
    • Stay connected with friends and loved ones via phone, text or video-chat.
    • Keep a journal to let out your feelings, understand your stressors, and recognize the good things, too.
  • Enjoy life.
    • With the CDC’s recommendations of social distancing in place, many of us will spend more time at home than we are used to. Find creative ways to make the time enjoyable and rewarding.
      • Start a new book, puzzle or TV series.
      • Catch up with your family members over a cup of coffee or tea.
      • Pet and play with your dog or cat.
      • Watch movies or listen to music.
      • Pick up a new hobby – try photography or painting.
      • Tackle a home project you’ve been putting off for too long.
  • Seek help. 
    • This situation is unlike any other we have encountered, and the disruption to our routines and sense of well-being can challenge us in new ways.
    • If COVID-19 news is causing you deep anxiety or depression, please seek support from mental health professionals.

The following resources are available to you:

 

Source: CDC