How To Care For A Covid-19 Patient At Home Without Getting Infected
As Nigeria and her sister African countries enforce lockdowns as a means to prevent the spread of coronavirus, we do our part by staying at home, hoping that none of our loved ones contracts the deadly virus. However, because symptoms are not immediate there’s always the possibility that a family member might have contracted it before the lockdown. And most people who contract coronavirus will have only mild symptoms, and experts say people like that should stay at home and only leave when it’s severe for medical attention. So what do you do if a family member is infected with the coronavirus? Find out how to care for a person with COVID-19 at home.
How to care for someone with COVID-19 at home
Because of collapsing healthcare systems around the world, experts advise that patients should stay at home unless their symptoms worsen. Many hospitals have their hands full with serious cases of coronavirus, which might explain why a New York man was able to reportedly hide his symptoms so that he could pass to see his wife who just gave birth at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester. The hospital has since announced stricter measures for visitors henceforth.
In Nigeria, experts already speculate that our healthcare will be overwhelmed if there’s a large number of cases. This means it is important to learn how to care for those with mild symptoms at home. If any of your loved ones tests positive or begins to show symptoms, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the following steps:
- Monitor symptoms
People may be sick with the virus for 1 to 14 days before developing symptoms. The most common symptoms of coronavirus disease include fever, tiredness, and dry cough. And about 80% of people recover from the disease without needing hospital treatment, while about 1 in 6 people get seriously sick. Severe cases tend to worsen about five to 10 days after symptoms start, so monitor the infected person closely and if they get worse, call your healthcare provider. Pain or pressure in the chest, shortness of breath, and confusion are signs that a person requires immediate medical attention.
- Prevent the spread of the virus
The first thing you should do if a person close to you shows symptoms of coronavirus is to keep them in isolation. This practically means putting the person in a separate bedroom with a separate bathroom. Make sure the room has enough ventilation. However, it may happen that your house isn’t big enough and you have to share a bathroom. In that case, you should give the bathroom a quick swipe after the person has used it. Also, avoid sharing items like towels, beddings and dishes with the infected person.
Treating the symptoms at home involves getting plenty of rest, avoiding alcohol and drinking enough water so that your pee is a clear colour. Do not let the infected person do anything stressful while they are sick. Also, some over-the-counter drugs can be used to treat some symptoms. But you will need to ask your healthcare provider about treatments.
- Decide when to end isolation
According to the CDC, you should wait for three days after the person’s fever has subsided without the help of any medication. Also, wait for other symptoms like shortness of breath to improve and wait for seven days since the first appearance of symptoms. For example, if the person’s fever was over on Friday but their symptoms first appeared on Tuesday, you’d have to wait seven days after Tuesday and not Friday.
One of the things that is not talked about much is how lonely it can be for a quarantined person. So as you care for the sick find ways to create social bonding to keep them from feeling alone.
If you notice any of the COVID-19 symptoms, please call any of these NCDC numbers.
- Toll-Free Number: 0800 9700 0010
- Whatsapp: +234708 711 0839
- SMS Number: +234809 955 5577
Make sure to engage in social distancing and stay safe. Do you have any questions? Share in the comments section