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Home Care Tips for Mild COVID-19 Symptoms

Home Care Tips for Mild COVID-19 Symptoms

Lately, we’ve been hearing news about how hospitals are reaching their full capacities. The lack of beds, equipment, and medicines renders them incapable of further accepting COVID-19 patients. The good news is, most cases of SARS-Cov2 infections are mild and recovery can happen at home. But the question is, how do we address mild COVID symptoms at home? Find out here.

Save Important Contact Details

If you haven’t done so yet, learn how your community handles suspect and confirmed COVID cases.

You see, some municipalities advise symptomatic patients to contact their barangay officers so they can assign them to a healthcare worker. The healthcare worker will then assist them with their needs and guide them through testing, isolation, or transfer to a hospital.

COVID-19: Why Do Some Survive and Others Don’t?

It’ll also be helpful to determine if your area has a dedicated quarantine facility, especially if you live with someone who’s at risk of developing severe infection.

Following your municipality’s social media accounts and saving their contact numbers, as well as the numbers of the nearest healthcare facilities, might prove useful in case you get sick with mild or severe COVID.

Prepare the Essentials

Sick or not, it wouldn’t hurt you to keep a stock of the following essential items:

  • Food and water; include ingredients for healthy meals and foods you and your family like even when sick
  • Household supplies, especially for cleaning and disinfection
  • Medicines and supplements
  • Thermometer
  • Masks
  • Oximeter
  • A way to consult a doctor (phone or internet) and contact others, to alert them that you need help.

How to Address Mild COVID Symptoms at Home

In case you developed mild COVID symptoms like fever, body aches, cough, sore throat, and headache, consider doing the following:

Stay at home

Don’t go to work even if you feel well enough to do so.

At home, isolate yourself and wear a mask if you need to be around people. Don’t share utensils and do have your food sent to your room during mealtimes. If your home has two bathrooms, dedicate one to yourself. When bathroom sharing is the only option, it needs disinfection after you use it. Also, don’t forget regular handwashing and disinfection.

Now, if you live alone, arrange for no-contact delivery of your essentials. In some areas, the barangay officers help with this.

how to address covid symptoms at home

Get plenty of rest

One of the things you can do to address mild COVID symptoms at home is to get plenty of rest. Resting and having adequate sleep help your body fight off the infection.

Stay hydrated

Getting plenty of fluids helps address some of the mild symptoms of COVID at home.

If you have a fever, water replaces the fluids you lose through sweating and it helps dehydration. Warm water can also soothe dry cough and nasal congestion by breaking up the mucus. Consider sipping water throughout the day.

Note: Avoid sugary drinks and caffeinated beverages. However, you can add a teaspoon of honey with a cup of tea or water to ease your sore throat.

Eat nutritious meals

Even if you lose your sense of taste and smell, it’s crucial to have healthy meals.

If you’re alone and capable, consider meal prepping batches of foods, so you don’t have to cook now and then. Otherwise, ask another member of the family to prepare your meals.

Try steam inhalation

Steam inhalation or suob does not treat COVID-19, but it may help alleviate nasal congestion and sore throat. However, be careful in handling hot water as you might scald yourself. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier.

Myth or Fact? Steam Inhalation Against COVID-19

Consider OTC medicines and supplements

And finally, you can consider over-the-counter medicines and supplements after the recommendation of your doctor via online consultation or telemedicine.

  • For fever, headache, and body aches, you can take acetaminophen or paracetamol.
  • For coughing, it depends. Dry cough may need an expectorant or mucolytic (guaifenesin); wet cough may require cough suppressant (dextromethorphan). Some brands contain both ingredients.
  • While we need more studies to prove their effectiveness against COVID-19, some reports1,2 indicate that Vitamin C and D might be helpful.

Important: Many cough medicines contain paracetamol; if that’s the case, please don’t take paracetamol separately. Additionally, don’t take any antibiotics unless you are advised by your physician.

On Ending Quarantine

If you underwent swab or saliva testing, the doctor will tell you when you can end your quarantine. If you didn’t undergo testing, CDC recommends ending your isolation only after you satisfy ALL these criteria:

  • At least 10 days have passed your symptoms started
  • At least 24 hours have passed since you didn’t have a fever without the use of anti-fever medicines.
  • Your other symptoms are improving

When to Seek Medical Help Right Away

The above recommendations are only to manage mild COVID symptoms. Call for medical help right away, or ask someone else in the house to do so, if you experience the following:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pressure or pain in the chest
  • Inability to wake or stay awake
  • New confusion
  • Pale, grey, or bluish discoloration in the lips and nailbeds.

Finally, don’t address COVID symptoms at home if you’re at risk of severe infection. Conditions that put you at risk include advanced age, heart diseases, obesity, and cancer. In these cases, you strictly need the guidance of a doctor.

Learn more about Coronavirus here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Short term, high-dose vitamin D supplementation for COVID-19 disease: a randomised, placebo-controlled, study (SHADE study)
https://pmj.bmj.com/content/early/2020/11/12/postgradmedj-2020-139065
Accessed April 7, 2021

Vitamin C Can Shorten the Length of Stay in the ICU: A Meta-Analysis
https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/11/4/708
Accessed April 7, 2021

How to Treat Mild COVID-19 Symptoms at Home
https://www.houstonmethodist.org/blog/articles/2020/aug/how-to-treat-mild-covid-19-symptoms-at-home/
Accessed April 7, 2021

Treating Coronavirus at Home
https://www.umms.org/coronavirus/what-to-know/treat-covid-at-home?__
Accessed April 7, 2021

Treating COVID-19 at home: Care tips for you and others
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/in-depth/treating-covid-19-at-home/art-20483273
Accessed April 7, 2021

What to Do If You Are Sick
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/steps-when-sick.html
Accessed April 7, 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Being Ready to Quarantine
https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/coronavirus-prepare.html
Accessed April 7, 2021

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Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. on Apr 19
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