COVID-19 is literally everywhere. Between the news coverage, social media, and new cases popping up every day, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Add online classes and social distancing to that equation and it's downright scary.
The good news is, you’re not alone. You may be physically alone, but we are all going through this together. These seemingly drastic measures are going to help us beat this virus so that life can go back to normal. Until that happens, we’re here for you! We’ve pulled together some tips and tricks on how to protect your physical and mental health during this time.
Wash your hands!
The CDC recommends washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Not sure how long 20 seconds is? It's about as long as the first 2 verses of Lizzo's Good as Hell.
When washing your hands isn't an option, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. As people panic, stores are starting to run low on stock. Here is an at-home recipe for hand sanitizer:
- Isopropyl alcohol (60% or higher)
- Aloe vera gel
- Tea tree oil
Mix 3 parts isopropyl alcohol to 1 part aloe vera gel. Add a few drops of tea tree oil to give it a pleasant scent.
Avoid touching your face!
Based on a 2015 study from APIC, the average person touches their face 23 times per hour. Why is this a big deal you ask? Well, According to WHO COVID-19 may persist on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. When you touch an infected surface and then touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, you are putting the virus into your body.
Practice Social Distancing
Let's be honest, most campuses have made this decision for you, and here's why: when someone with COVID-19 coughs or sneezes the droplets can travel as far as 4.5 meters meaning you do not have to be touching another human to contract the virus from them. Avoiding public places and maintaining safe distances from others is one of the quickest ways to slow the spread. Time to up your facetime usage!
Yes, I realize we JUST talked about social distancing, but there are other ways to stay connected. Staying at home for the foreseeable future will get lonely and increase anxiety. Curb that anxiety by having facetime or phone dates with sisters you normally see daily, getting more engaged on social media, or going old school and writing a letter (or email) to a penpal.
With everything going on it's super easy to get caught up in a fear spiral about how much worse things could get. Practicing mindfulness is a great way to snap yourself out of that spiral. Put your feet on the floor and take some deep breaths, then start to take in the sights, sounds, and smells around you. This will help you to stay grounded when things feel out of control.
Practice Deep Self-Care
Slowing down and taking some me-time doesn't have to be a bad thing! Use this time to journal, make a gratitude list, set some goals, vision board, whatever feels good to you! Check off some of those self-care items that you always talk about doing, but never find time for. Take a bath, do some yoga, or even get back into an old hobby (you might even find some old supplies while you're roaming around your house!). Use this time to rest and recharge!
Stay safe out there TSL Nation!