Covid-19 – General thoughts on keeping well

With kind permission of www.cerebralpalsyscotland.org.uk,  a useful daily checklist:

How do I try to keep well at this time?

  • Sleep: Sleeping has been shown to restore our immune system and help us feel more mentally able to deal with challenges that we face.

 

  • Nutrition: Maintain a healthy diet with lots of fruit and vegetables. Vitamin C and Zinc play an important role in this. Our body can’t store vitamin C so it is good to ensure our diets regularly include fruit and veg that are vitamin C rich.

 

  • Water: Keeping well hydrated helps keep secretions moist and therefore easier to clear (cough). This is especially important if you are already prone to respiratory problems.

 

  • Keeping active: Whether in a wheelchair or mobile – keeping physically active is a good way of looking after our mental and physical health. Aerobic exercise in particular is beneficial to provoke deep breathing. We have pulled together some ideas and resources to get you started. Even if you don’t have respiratory difficulties you may find the following suggestions useful:
    • Keeping active: Managing Posture – Where practical – aim to change position regularly. This could mean getting out of your chair e.g. standing frame, side lying, sitting up, rolling, moving position within your chair. Continue with any recommended physiotherapy programme you have been provided with. This is very important if you have a chest-physio programme as it can play an important part in helping to keep your chest clear.
    • Keeping active: Take a moment to breathe well – Practicing deep breathing and exercise to stretch your chest will help you to expand your lungs capacity. This is very good strategy to be able cough productively and it will help you get better sooner. Try the following exercises – don’t worry about getting into the exact pose at the expense of holding your breath. Work within your abilities – the main thing to focus on is getting deep breaths that will expand your chest. (You may need a carer to assist if unable to assume positions yourself.)
      • Lie comfortably on your back – if your lower back arches a lot, place one or two pillows under your knees.
      • Your carer can lift your arms above your head as far as you feel comfortable and possibly prop your arms with additional pillows for support. Once positioned comfortably, focus on taking slow deep breaths and even slower releasing your breath.
      • Practice for few minutes and then turn on your side and bring on arm up to your ear and breath in the same slow manner into your side for few minutes. Repeat on the other side too.