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Expert offers advice on COVID long-term care | Health info

By By Robert Preidt Reporter HealthDay, health day reporter

(Health Day)

SUNDAY, April 17, 2022 (HealthDay News) — If you’re one of the many people with long COVIDan expert offers advice on how to deal with it.

The first step: Give yourself time to recover.

“One thing we’ve seen repeatedly is that patients are pushing themselves too hard trying to recover. It makes sense. Everyone is so eager to ‘get back to normal life’ after their infection and their isolation,” said Dr. Greg Vanichkachorn, director of the COVID Activity Rehabilitation Program at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

But rushing through your daily routine can trigger discouraging flare-ups of long-lasting COVID symptoms like fatigue, shortness of breath and muscle aches.

“The fastest way to recover is to start slow and easy and then try to gradually increase your activities, Vanichkachorn said in a clinic press release.

It is important to stay hydrated and eat healthy by following a balanced diet, Mediterranean type diet (including vegetables, legumes, fruits, nuts, fish and olive oil) and avoiding processed and high fat foods.

When exercising, focus on resistance workouts rather than heart-rate-boosting activities like walking and bicycling, Vanichkachorn said.

Cardiovascular exercise “is the most difficult type of activity for patients with post-COVID syndrome. Instead, start with resistance activities, such as working out with a resistance band, light free weights, yoga or Pilates,” Vanichkachorn said. “Once it’s going well, you can add some light cardio.”

Good sleep is also essential for recovery. Make sure your bedroom has good air circulation and is slightly cooler than during the day. Eliminate or minimize the use of electronic devices before bedtime, don’t consume caffeine after lunch, and don’t exercise within two hours of bedtime, he advised.

It’s also good to create a normal daytime schedule by getting up at a certain time, eating regular meals, and having a regular bedtime.

“About a third of patients have prolonged taste and smell disturbances after acute COVID infection. Fortunately, most patients will be better within six months, and even more within 12 months,” Vanichkachorn said. “If you want to speed things up, I recommend olfactory rehabilitation”, also known as odor recycling.

“Fortunately,” he concluded, “the ideal recovery from post-COVID syndrome begins at home.”

There is more on long COVID at the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SOURCE: Mayo Clinic, press release, April 7, 2022

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