It is a common practice in Public Health during pandemics or the spread of a contagious disease that, the public is protected by preventing the exposure of people who have or may have a contagious disease by isolation or quarantine.
Since Covid-19 was declared a pandemic by World Health Organisation (WHO), most people have been asked to self quarantine if they have mild or moderate symptoms while those in critical conditions are isolated.
In Ghana, majority of people cringe at the mention of quarantine or isolation; the mere thought of it sends shivers down their spine.
In as much as strictly adhering to the Covid-19 health safety protocols would reduce the risk of contracting the virus, it does not end there if indeed you want to protect yourself and avoid infecting other people.
As President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo indicated that our safety and health lies in our own hands: ‘We know how to bring the economy back to life. What we do not know is how to bring people back to life”
If you are diagnosed with Covid-19 with mild or moderate symptoms, awaiting test result or contact traced for interacting with a Covid-19 positive person or even showing mild symptoms which is a suspected case; going into self quarantine is the first step in protecting yourself and other people.
Self quarantine is not a death sentence, there are simple steps one can take to help prep for the 14days mandatory quarantine period.
Disclaimer: Information provided are purely from research and personal experience and not from a health authority.
How to prepare and take care of yourself at home if you have mild symptoms of Covid-19
1. Draw a stay home plan
If you do not come up with a daily routine timeable, you would always be in bed and pity yourself but things can be done differently. Home quarantine involves having a plan of action that you can stick to such as: list of contacts of family and friends you can communicate with, time to wake up, exercise, eat, read a book or even do some school or office work, time to cook( very essential as health workers recommend we eat healthy food). The bottom line is to have a list if activities you plan and stick to so you do not get bored and tempted to step out before the quarantine period ends.
2. Shopping list
Be sure to purchase enough groceries to last for the two weeks period. Some essential items to purchase are: tissues, thermometer to check your temperature at least twice daily, household cleaning and sanitizing products to disinfect your home, fruits and vegetables, vitamin C (to boost your immune system). Due to the frequent coughing and sneezing, it is critical to stay hydrated especially if your fever is high, having enough supply of clean water comes in very handy. Health workers explain that healthy hydration levels can help your nose by ensuring that the mucus membrane is intact. Be sure to have extra sheets, towels and night wears, the virus is spread by touching contaminated surfaces so do well to wash and disinfects all clothes and surfaces.
3. Exercise and have enough supply of prescribed medicines
Keeping physically active is important to your recovery and healthy life. About 15mins- 20mins active yet easy-going exercise daily would help maintain your physique and boost immune system. Persons with other underlying conditions such as asthma, diabetes, respiratory illness among others should do well to purchase enough prescribed medication to last for four weeks.
4. Eat healthy
All the fast food and junk food does not matter at this point. Our idea of “rich food” is actually junk food. Oranges, banana, watermelons, garden eggs, cucumber, Kontonmire and the famous presidential dawadawa among other foods should be on your diet list. Eating healthy food is essential in regaining your strength and boosting your immune system.
5. Entertainment options
Health personnel say that it is important to take care of ones mental health during self-quarantine. The stress and emotional drain has to be preoccupied with entertaining activities such as: reading books, watching movies, gaming, social media engagement (be careful what you put out there or read), learning new skills on YouTube and a variety of other interesting activities to keep you entertained while at home.
6. Have the contact of local health providers
When fevers remain high or a person’s symptoms cause discomfort, remember to contact a professional healthcare worker for further advice of the next step. Remember the Covid-19 emergency numbers in Ghana are: +233 55 843 9868 / +233 50 949 7700.
Always remember to wash your hand frequently with soap under running water, use alcohol based hand sanitisers, wear a face mask and observe social distancing protocol to reduce your risk contracting coronavirus. This is the new normal. #StaySafe
Written by: Nana Abena Grant | universnewsroom.com