Every sneeze, cough or fever does not mean you have COVID-19. With the current scenario of rising COVID-19 cases, it is natural to feel worried about its many symptoms and how it is treated. Many COVID-19 cases can be treated at home but a few require hospitalisation and further treatment. Let’s understand more about coronavirus treatment in this article!
While a majority of people develop mild to moderate symptoms, including fever, tiredness, fatigue, dry cough, loss of taste and smell due to COVID-19, the less common symptoms include headache, sore throat, diarrhoea, conjunctivitis, and skin rash. The more severe cases show difficulty in breathing, loss of speech, and pain in the chest.
The most reliable test for the diagnosis of this disease is an RT PCR test that gives the accurate amount of virus detected in a sample. In advanced cases of the disease, a CT scan may be needed to diagnose the lung condition. The treatment of COVID-19 depends upon the symptoms and their degree in each patient.
Home treatment for COVID-19
If you experience any of the COVID-19 symptoms, it is best to get yourself tested. If the result comes back positive, then consult with your doctor immediately. Most asymptomatic and mild cases are advised of COVID home treatment and quarantine. However, you must always do so after consulting your doctor.
Here are some ways how you can take care of yourself during home treatment for COVID-19:
- Quarantine yourself
The first and most important thing to do before you begin home treatment for COVID is to isolate yourself from the others in the house. This helps to protect them from the infection. Quarantine in a well-ventilated room with an attached bathroom, so you don’t have to come in contact with other people in your house. Always wear an N-95 mask when coming in contact with a caregiver or family member.
- Keep hydrating
It is absolutely essential to keep yourself well-hydrated during your recovery period. Make sure you drink enough water throughout the day and avoid caffeinated drinks and alcohol.
- Maintain appropriate hygiene and disinfection of surfaces and personal items
COVID patients isolating and recovering at home must follow all safety and hygiene measures like washing their hands with soap and water for at least 40 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer frequently. The surfaces in the room that are touched often must be cleaned regularly with 1% hypochlorite solution.
- Monitor your vitals
While you are recovering from COVID-19 at home, you must constantly monitor your vitals, and this includes daily temperature, O2 levels using a pulse oximeter three to four times a day, heart rate, breathing rate, and overall symptom update. It is best to make a chart with all these parameters for each day as it makes it easier for you and your doctor to determine the progress of your treatment.
- Stay in constant touch with your physician
An essential part of COVID home treatment is staying in constant touch with your treating physician. The vitals that you monitor throughout the day must be conveyed to your treating physician so that they are aware of the progress in your treatment.
- Continue taking your existing medications
If you are under medications for your existing comorbidities, continue taking them and let your doctor know about them right at the beginning of treatment. This helps them prescribe appropriate medications and make clinical decisions based on them.
- Warm water gargles and steam inhalation
The best way to treat symptoms like sore throat and dry cough at home is warm water gargle and steam inhalation two to three times a day.
- Symptomatic relief
The goal of COVID-19 home treatment is symptomatic relief while the body recovers from the disease. Most often, patients have prescribed medication for fever from the NSAIDs category of drugs to help with the fever and headache. A proper diet, lots of water, and ample rest help to relieve fatigue.
Patients need to monitor their health and seek medical attention in the following cases:
- O2 less than 94% in ambient room air
- Difficulty in breathing
- Pain in the chest
- Mental confusion or difficulty in moving or getting up
These conditions may require one to seek hospital treatment for COVID-19. If you are wondering if there is any cure for coronavirus, you must know that there is no cure yet, and hospital treatment for the condition provides supportive care.
Patients are assessed for their need for oxygen, the amount of the gas required, frequency of change of the cylinder, and the need for oxygen concentrators.
Mind Over Matter
With the pandemic well raging for over a year now, it has created immense fatigue among the healthcare and frontline workers and a sense of panic and fear among the people. This panic crosses all limits when one tests positive for the virus or has a family member who has. Studies show that having a positive mindset and good mental health leads to faster recovery from COVID-19 both at home as well as in a hospital setting.
Panic and fear trigger stress in our body, which automatically reduces our immunity and ability to fight infections. Practising meditation, breathing techniques, or continuing light exercises helps to boost your immunity and hasten your recovery. The best way to keep a positive attitude is by engaging yourself in an alternative activity like a hobby, reading books, watching your favourite shows on TV, etc. It may be a good idea to steer clear of negative news or change the channel as soon as you see it.
Developing self-coping strategies is a great way to recover for COVID-19 in the shortest time and healthiest way possible.
If you have recovered from COVID-19, kudos to you! You’ve been brave! Though you now have antibodies against the virus, do not let your guard down yet as there are chances of reinfection. Practice all COVID-19 preventive measures like double masking, social distancing, and frequent hand hygiene at all times.
6 to 8 weeks post-recovery, get yourself vaccinated to strengthen your immunity against the virus and protect those around you as well. Spread positivity and do not panic in these critical times as it goes a long way in helping people cope with the stress of the disease.
Disclaimer: The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.