Building A Strong Community Network Will Be Crucial
World Health Organisation is advising people to maintain a robust immune system IMAGE: Jean Pierre Niptik
With more than 210,000 reported cases and 9,000 lives lost to COVID19, leaders say the lives of many will change dramatically as the world adjusts to a new reality.
Dr.Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the Director-General of World Health Organisation (WHO) says the pandemic will take much more than a heavy financial toll on businesses and the global economy.
He warns people must be prepared for its maximum impact as it’s expected to affect the psychology of many.
“During this difficult time it’s important to continue looking after your physical and mental health.”
“This will not only help you in the long term; it will also help you fight COVID if you get it.”
In a press briefing at the WHO headquarters in Geneva on Friday 20 March, Dr.Tedros advised people to maintain a robust immune system.
“First, eat a healthy and nutritious diet, which helps your immune system to function properly.”
“Second, limit your alcohol consumption and avoid sugary drinks.”
“Third, don’t smoke. Smoking can increase your risk of developing serious disease if you become infected with COVID-19.”
“Fourth, exercise. WHO recommends 30 minutes of physical activity a day for adults and one hour a day for children.”
He said: “If your local or national guidelines allow it go outside for a walk, a run or a ride and keep a safe distance from others.”
With strict movements enforced in various parts of the world, Dr.Tedros has advised people to take advantage of their personal space at home.
“Find an exercise video online, dance to music, do some yoga or walk up and down the stairs.”
“If you’re working at home make sure you don’t sit in the same position for long periods; get up and take a three-minute break every 30 minutes.”
He said: “WHO will be providing more advice on how to stay healthy at home in the coming days and weeks. Fifth, look after your mental health.”
Dr.Tedros says building a strong network will be crucial.
“It’s normal to feel stressed, confused and scared during a crisis.”
“Talking to people you know and trust can help. Supporting other people in your community can help you as much as it does them.”
“Check on neighbours, family and friends. Compassion is a medicine. Listen to music, read a book or play a game and try not to read or watch too much news if it makes you anxious.”
He said: “COVID-19 is taking so much from us but it’s also giving us something special; the opportunity to come together as one humanity, to work together, to learn together, to grow together.”