During the coronavirus pandemic, there have been many new health messages thrown at us. First it was to wash your hands regularly and thoroughly. Then it was to wear a mask whenever we went to a grocery store or areas where social distancing is difficult. Now we’re having to continue to socially distance from each other. While it’s important to listen to the new advice to protect us from COVID-19, it’s also important not to forget the health advice from less challenging times, from when you were a kid, for example. Here are a few ways you can help protect your physical health during this worldwide pandemic.
The pandemic has prompted lifestyle changes that could have a serious effect on your blood pressure. We’ve all been encouraged throughout the pandemic to stay at home more, which means we’ve been less active and maybe even exercised less. If you’ve been visiting the grocery store less, you might find your diet includes less fresh fruit and vegetables that go bad quickly and more food high in salt and meat and dairy products. The pandemic has also caused a lot of stress for many people, whether it’s worrying about finances, loved ones or just the change in routine. All three of these are major factors that could increase your blood pressure.
So how can you tell if your blood pressure is on the up? One of the easiest ways to measure your blood pressure is to buy one of the many fitness trackers with blood pressure monitoring built in. Once you know your number, you’ll be able to change the most unhealthy parts of your lifestyle and hopefully see that rate drop and stay low over time.
The hospital has always been an unpleasant place to visit, but COVID-19 has made stepping foot through the doors an even more daunting prospect. With all the extra safety precautions and the fact that some of the patients are likely to be infected with the disease, many people may be tempted to cancel their routine appointments.
It’s hugely important, especially for women, to keep these check-ups. Whether it’s a gynecologist visit or a pap smear, it’s important that you continue to check for symptoms of other illnesses while trying to avoid the coronavirus. There are already concerns that missed cancer appointments could lead to people going undiagnosed with breast and other cancers. Hospitals are continuing to offer these services because they know how lifesaving they can be, so it’s important you continue to attend these appointments if possible.
Whilst we’re all being told to stay at home, it’s important to stay active in whatever way you can. Whether that’s swapping your gym class for a session streamed online, or just going out for a stroll in a quiet park, find a way to exercise that is safe for you. Regularly stretching your muscles will reduce the risk of injury once you’re allowed to get back to your active lifestyle.