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A pulmonologist shares tips on how to manage Covid-19 at home

Published on:22 April 2021, 18:01pm IST
Coronavirus patients who have mild symptoms can manage the disease at home as long as they take care of these few things, says pulmonary specialist Dr Rajesh Chawla.
Dr Rajesh Chawla
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Covid-19 treatment at home
Taking care of a few things will go a long way in managing coronavirus at home. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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The new strain of coronavirus is more infectious and is spreading even faster. Hence, lowering our guards is not an option. Prevention from this mutation requires more safety and strictly adhering to precautions. In fact, the new strain has also diversified the list of symptoms. This time around, the majority of young adults are reporting newer symptoms like diarrhoea, vomiting, body aches, infection in the eyes and high-grade fever.

Needless to say, Covid-19 positive patients who have manageable symptoms and are isolating at home require a proper care regime for healthy recovery. In addition, it also needs to be ensured that they don’t become spreaders. This new strain is spreading from one family to another very quickly. Hence, it is very important to isolate patients properly. 

Essential tips for the patients under home quarantine
  • The 16-day quarantine period starts from the day the patient tests positive for Covid-19 (receives his/her reports).
  • On being tested positive, the remaining family members of the patient should only take the test after 5 days of the patient’s quarantine period, provided they don’t have any symptoms
  • The patient must be isolated in a different room that has proper air ventilation and also has a personal washroom attached.
  • The patient should monitor his/her temperature and oxygen levels after every 6 hours.
  • Any kind of strenuous physical exercises should not be done by the patient for 16 days, barring a few important breathing exercises (in consultation with your doctor).
  • The patient should not use his/her hands directly for receiving the essentials and food from anybody in their family.
  • The patient’s laundry and vessels should be washed separately by him/her. Keep in mind that using disposables for serving food is a convenient option.
  • The patient’s diet for the initial one week should be light but nutritious. Simple home-cooked vegetarian food is good. Seasonal fruits can also be consumed. The patient must consume at least 2 litres of liquid in a day. Liquids like coconut and lemon water are highly recommended. Diabetic patients should avoid having sweetened liquids.
  • On experiencing irritation in the throat, gargle with lukewarm/ saline water.
  • The patient’s symptoms will vary every day. Hence, he/she should rest properly and allow the body to heal.
  • Another RTPCR test should be done after 10 days of the patient’s 16-day quarantine period.
  • Lastly, the virus requires the patient to be physically isolated but not emotionally alone. Hence, the patient should take care of their mental health by either indulging in some meditation or e-connecting with loved ones. 
Covid-19 treatment at home
Take care of yourself with these tips. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Being prepared for an emergency

During home quarantine, a Covid-19 positive patient and their family should be well prepared for an emergency situation.

  • A patient in quarantine should always keep handy the contacts of family, doctors, ambulance and health experts. The same should be kept handy by the patient’s family as well. 
  • Any patient with existing comorbidity should be extra careful. He/she should be regularly monitoring blood pressure and sugar levels. Also, it is advisable to keep prior reports handy and be in regular touch with a doctor.
  • Their families should also follow all stipulated COVID-19 guidelines, as it will help contain the spread of the virus.  

Coronavirus patients who have mild symptoms can manage the condition at home with these few steps but do speak with a doctor as soon as you feel like the health situation is worsening.

Dr Rajesh Chawla Dr Rajesh Chawla

Dr Rajesh Chawla is a senior consultant of pulmonary medicine at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, New Delhi.