Tips for the Elderly Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

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Coronavirus is spreading like wildfire and if you are over 60, extraordinary measures are required to be taken on an individual level to win the battle against this disease! 

The death rate is ten times greater than normal for those over 80. Scary, isn’t it? The fact that India is home to 16 crore senior citizens makes it even more alarming. Therefore, let’s stay a step ahead and adopt preventive measures to skip all the hassle and agony. 

Here are a few self-help tips for people over 60 and others with pre-existing health conditions– 

  • Avoid Stepping Out! 

Stay within the house at all times. Any type of gathering, small or large is out of the question! Do not go to crowded places like parks, markets or religious places. If you live alone, consider asking help from healthy neighbours to stock essentials. If it is absolutely necessary to go out, maintain 1-meter distance from others. 

  • Be Active! 

Do not compromise on your daily walks, even if it means strolling from one end of the house to another! Try yoga or light exercise at home. It will boost immunity. 

  • Maintain Proper Hygiene

Wash hands regularly for at least 20 seconds, especially before meals and after using the washroom. Clean the objects that are used daily, such as spectacles and mobile covers. 

If you are unwell, sneeze or cough into a tissue and dispose it immediately. If you are comfortable with a handkerchief, wash it regularly after use. Strictly avoid touching your face or others. 

Stay Healthy! 

Eat home-cooked meals at proper hours. Try eating hot meals to reduce the chance of infection. Take your prescribed medicines regularly. 

Do not self-medicate under any circumstances. If you are not well, contact your nearest medical facility and follow their advice. For your regular checkups, try teleconsultation as far as possible!

Being homebound can take a toll on your mental health. Apart from physical health, mental well being is of utmost importance. Lockdown can be hard on the people who stay alone while other times the family environment is not conducive.

When the going gets tough, the tough get going! 

Protect your sanity by following these tips during tough times-

  • Communicate! 

Just because you cannot step out, does not mean you have to isolate or confine yourself. 

Communicate with your family via video calls. If you stay in a joint family, interact with others provided you keep a safe distance and follow hygiene tips religiously. 

You can talk with your neighbours, as long as you do not gather and break any social distancing rules. 

  • Spread Positivity, Avoid Sensational News! 

There’s negative and unreliable news all around us. Do not pay heed to such information. Make sure you do not share unverified news. Practice mindfulness! It will reduce fear and generate positivity. 

Meditate or rediscover old hobbies. Whatever suits you! Sing along with the radio or have a card match with your better half. Read books or refresh old memories with loved ones. Keep your mind busy to avoid succumbing into depression. 

  • Avoid Drugs And Other Harmful Substances

Do not fall prey to any kind of addiction. Too much of anything is bad. Avoid tobacco, alcohol and other harmful substances which can degrade your immunity and make your more susceptible to the disease. It is unwise and highly dangerous during this period. 

If you are suffering from mental illness, call (08046110007). Take extra care if you previously had any mental health issues. 

Not all of us are blessed with pain-free joints and independent lifestyle. Hence, here’s a list of dos and don’ts for the caregivers of dependent elders – 

  • Remember washing your hand before touching or helping the older individuals. 
  • In the vicinity of an elder or otherwise, cover your nose and mouth while sneezing and coughing. 
  • Help them by cleaning their frequently used items, like a wheelchair, walking cane, walker and sanitize their bed regularly.
  • Make sure they frequently wash their hands. 
  • Give them food and medicines timely. 
  • Monitor their health closely and if you find any of the symptoms mentioned below, contact helpline-
    • Fever, with or without body ache 
    • Persistent cough and shortness of breath
    • Poor appetite and inability to feed
    • Change in mental status, such as excessively drowsy during the day
    • Not responding or speaking inappropriately
    • New onset of inability to recognize relative which he/she could do before

Contribution of every individual matters! There are various countries who have already won the war and others who have failed miserably. Let’s learn from the mistakes of the fallen and follow the steps of the undefeated!

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