Advice from a Chattanooga doctor on how you can take care of yourself at home if you’re suffering from COVID-19
Here’s a free advice from a local health professional on how you can take care of yourself at home if you’re suffering from the virus. This is very important for you to remember – if you’re infected and have shortness of breathe or you’re lethargic, doctors say seek medical help immediately.
Dr. Jigme Sethi who is the Chief of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine at Erlanger has a few lessons to help your lungs.
The first is something called proning.
Proning is where you lay on your stomach for an extended period of time.
It helps open up your lungs that are normally squashed by body wait when you’re on your back.
“It allows air to be redistributed to the back of the lungs. Areas of the lung that traditionally are squashed by body wait when you lie on your back and don’t get the air going in there can receive air and be ventilated better. So, that’s advocated for patients with active lung disease from COVID-19. And it does help patients that are staying home to get better faster or at least to breathe easier,” said Dr. Sethi.
Dr. Sethi says deep breathing is also important.
“Certainly deep breathing is important. What I tell my patients is to buy these bags of balloons you buy for children’s parties. Every time there’s a commercial on TV, which is basically every five minutes, blow up a balloon. Take deep breaths and blow out hard. Fill up the balloon and that seems to help them feel better from a respiratory standpoint,” said Dr. Sethi.
Over the counter medicines like acetaminophen relieve aches and pains. Some early studies suggested COVID patients should steer clear of Ibuprofen.
However, Dr. Sethi gives this advice:
“At this point, I think it is safe to take either one, but perhaps we should recommend that if patients have fever or pain, use Tylenol preferentially,” said Dr. Sethi.
Dr. Sethi says staying hydrated is key and warm liquids can help.
“As long as you get hydrated, it becomes easier to expectorate or cough up. But certainly steam inhalations may help,” said Dr. Sethi.
Zinc and Vitamin-D are circulating the internet as supplements that are helpful in fighting the virus.
But unless you’re deficient for those, this doctor says it’s probably best to steer clear if you’re infected, for now.