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Recommendations to Weather the COVID-19 Pandemic

 

To Our Patients,

You have been on my mind during these last few difficult weeks. As we enter into the new month of April, traditionally seen as a season of rebirth, I wanted to give you the best advice I have while waiting out this pandemic.

The best defense is a good offense. What does this mean? It means you have a lot of control over whether or not you make yourself vulnerable, get sick and put your family at risk. This virus is not a strong virus. You can outsmart it, right now, by avoiding it. How?

 

  1. Assume you are carrying the virus.

– Wash your hands for 20 seconds (sing happy birthday twice) after touching any door handle, your face or packages. Have a family member hold you accountable.

– Stay home. Especially if you are over 60 or over 50 with cardiovascular conditions, diabetes or are pregnant. But as we are all now aware, no one is immune to this virus. Young and old, alike, are susceptible. In lieu of going out, you can utilize one of the many delivery services we’re fortunate enough to have at our disposal:

 

  1. Boost your immunity.

– Sleep 7.5+ hours per night.

– Eat vegetables and/or fruit with every meal. There should be more color on the plate than anything else. Add honey, ginger and lemon whenever possible.

– Walk outside daily for 30 minutes to clear your mind (while minding physical distance), build up Vitamin D3 and let the sun kill the virus.

– Take your multivitamin, refill your prescriptions.

– Drink 8 glasses of water a day. In additiona, hot beverages may serve additional benefit to killing the virus. Now is the time to brew the “perfect cup.”

 

  1. Avoid the Emergency Department, unless you are having difficulty breathing or have a fever over 100.

– Not sure if it is COVID-19 and don’t have medical insurance? You can visit HeyDoctor for an online assessment based on CDC guidelines.

 

  1. Avoid Walk-In Urgent Care.

– I am offering Telehealth options for patients who may have an urgent eye condition and don’t feel able to come into the office, or if their symptoms advise against doing so. Telehealth is limited with respect to eyecare, but has been able to fill a void when we can’t “see” you in the office. Simply call our on-call number, and I can walk you through the steps.

– If you wear contact lenses, make sure you are not going to run out. For frequent replacement contact lenses, clean and store in ClearCare instead of your regular solution and decrease your wearing time. Boil your regular case for 10 minutes.

– If you have spring allergies, change from oral Claritin/Zyrtec to nasal Flonase and from a ceiling fan to a rotating floor fan. Rinse sinuses nightly with the saline or use a NetiPot. Shower or change your pillow case every night. All these changes will reduce drying out your first line of viral defense – moist mucus membranes – lowering your chance of a sinus infection.

 

Lastly, there are resources that can support you if your income has been affected by COVID-19.

– Call your credit card / student loan / mortgage / auto loan lenders and ask for a 90-day relief from payments, interest and penalties.

– Ask your HR department for any unemployment resources.

– Connecticut has a wealth of information available on its Coronavirus Website Portal.

 

This is a scary time. Take a moment and reach out to others by calling on your neighbor, messaging those online who may live alone or sending a letter to an isolated grandparent or nursing home resident. Share these tips with friends. Most of all, please help preserve Plainville’s small-town character by using local businesses whenever possible – they are in need of your support now more than ever:

 

Thank you for doing your part in trying to help flatten-the-curve.

 

Sincerely,

Dr. McCleary