Ashley Young, owner and pharmacy manager of Sandstone Pharmacy Airdrie has this advice for you to stay safe and well during the Covid-19 pandemic:
Follow All Advisories from Alberta Health and Canada’s Public Health Website
– specifically pertaining to handwashing technique, social distancing, self-isolation and appropriate triage recommendations if you are feeling unwell.
– these measures are of the utmost importance to ensure that we are “flattening the curve” to ensure that our hospitals and primary care centers are able to keep up and provide care to those in need.
– utilize the resources available on the Alberta and Canada websites (for example, the self assessment for Covid-19 symptoms); if you have questions about any of this call your pharmacy to speak with the pharmacist to help you complete the assessment or answer any other questions you may have **if you are symptomatic use the phone and DO NOT go to a medical center, pharmacy etc until you have been triaged over the phone unless of course you require immediate medical attention for potential life threatening circumstances**
Maintain a Strong Immune System
– eat a balanced diet rich in vegetables and fruits; most of your nutrients should be coming from the foods you eat
– if you have concerns around lack of nutrients in your diet or specific concerns due to chronic medical conditions/nutirnt deficiencies work with a professional to have this assessed and use high quality supplements as needed
– get sufficient amount of sleep; this varies from individual to individual but sleep is crucial for maintaining a healthy immune system
– if you have troubles sleeping work with a professional to address the root cause rather than relying on long term use of sedative medications
– be active every day; any activity that gets you moving
– ensure your vaccinations are up to date; notably the pneumonia vaccines for seniors and people at higher risk due to being immunocompromised during this pandemic as Covid-19 causes secondary pneumonia
Do Not Neglect Your Mental Health
– with the plethora of negative news and media many people will have increased feelings of anxiety, hopelessness, depression and many other negative emotional states.
– reduce the amount of media you are consuming and focus on platforms that provide only the information you really need (Ie. read the websites mentioned above for important health updates at a limited frequency; do not leave the 24 hours news channel on in the background at home as it streams all the bad news stories relating to the negative state of the world)
– begin or continue a mindfulness practice for yourself. This could be things such as: daily gratitude journaling, meditation, art work, playing an instrument; really anything that allows you to focus your mind and body on one thing for a set period of time
– ensure that you have a person or person(s) in your life that you can connect with over the phone, skype/zoom etc and check in with these people multiple times throughout the week. These conversations do not need to be lengthy but ensuring that there is human connection during times of social distancing and isolation is important. Focus these conversations on what you have been doing to keep well and NOT just updates on Covid or other world affairs.
– continue to take any supplements or medications that you may have been taking prior to this pandemic for your mental health