Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Got Covid? Practical Tips On What To Do Next

Chances are by now that either you – or someone close to you – has had to isolate due to an Omicron case. To make the whole thing smoother and more bearable – and safest if you end up with Covid – we’ve got some practical self-isolation tips, both to put in place before you have to isolate, or that can help you if you’re in the thick of it.

What to do ahead of time…

+ Make sure you have petrol in your tank! This one NEVER would have occurred to me, because I figured, if you’re isolating, you’re not going anywhere, right? But in actual fact, if Omi comes to your household you may need to leave the house to visit a testing station or to get medical help, if you need it.Make sure you have gas in your tank so you aren’t running on empty, desperately looking for a petrol station that has pay-at-pump!

+ Plan for your pets. If you get sick, who will walk your dog? What if the people you have lined up to do it are also having to isolate – who could do it then? Last week we got some tips from Rita, who got caught out when she and her husband both fell ill and now has some great advice for what to do – preferably ahead of time!

+ Consider what you could do for your community. Covid and the effects of the last two years have taken a real toll on individuals and families, with many doing it really tough. If you’re in a position to do so, have a think about what you might be able to do to help others – we’ve got a big list here. It’s also a good time to think about reaching out to your neighbours or people living nearby on your street – could you help each other if someone gets sick? Could you help if a dog needed walking/groceries needed to be picked up? Is there anyone on your street who is immunocompromised or might need some extra help?

+ Get together a kit and resources. You don’t have to go OTT, but have a look at what’s in your cupboards/medicine cupboard. Now is the time to make sure you have plenty of any prescription medicines you’re currently taking. Paracetamol and Ibuprofen are key if you get Covid – check you have some on hand and that it hasn’t expired. If you’re looking for what might be good to have on hand from those who have been there, check out this list, formed by the NZ Long Covid Support Group.

+ Know that there is some flexibility in the rules. If you’re showing symptoms and have gone out and returned a positive result – yes, now everyone you live with must isolate for 7 days. But, if you have someone at home who is immunocompromised or vulnerable who might not have caught it from you yet, it is possible to make alternative arrangements if you can safely do so! They’ll still need to take a test and you’ll need to make sure wherever it is you (or they) go to stay, that you won’t expose others to the virus. Otherwise, have a plan in place as to how you’ll manage space in your home – this can be super tricky, particularly if there are a lot of you living in a small space. But could someone isolate without having to be in shared spaces? Could they stay in a room and have food delivered through a window?? Could the microwave be moved into a bedroom? Maybe a chilly bin could be restocked every day or two? Is there a separate bathroom they could use, or how could you manage it so you’re not crossing over and can give things a good clean between using it? Give it some thought beforehand so that you can put a plan into action straight away if it does happen and have the extra supplies, like cleaning products on hand.

+ Right now, save the resources for those who really need them. Sure, it’s super convenient having groceries delivered to your house, but when you’re isolating, it’s no longer a nice thing to have, and instead becomes essential. Not being able to book a slot can become very stressful, particularly if you don’t have many other options or friends and family nearby to help. By all means, if you’re immunocompromised or are in a situation where it’s not safe to shop, continue to get your groceries delivered! But otherwise leave it for those who really need it have a shot. 

In Isolation already and need help?

+ Having trouble getting food? As staff shortages hit the big chains and we see an increase in the number of people having to isolate, it can be tough getting supplies when you need them. But there are other options – it just takes a bit of creativity! Smaller chains like Huckleberry are delivering, or shops like Naturally Organic.

Clevedon Herbs & Produce is delivering fruit and vege boxes nationwide, as is Produce Pronto. Or, maybe it’s a good time to try a meal kit delivery service, like Hello Fresh.

When I got stuck I found a new company, Supie, who could deliver (even rurally) within a couple of days and the service was amazing, with a good range of food. I’m not being paid to say this either – I was just so genuinely happy to find them!

Otherwise, it’s an expensive option, but Uber is going strong (and, depending where you live, in some areas they can even pick up a limited range of groceries from supermarkets and convenience stores), as is Deliver Easy

Or, think outside the box and see what your local cafes, restaurants and eateries are up to. Little Bird Organics is sending dinner Isolation Boxes Auckland-wide, and FED is delivering massive isolations packs (available to deliver to many north island addresses).

+ REST. If you’ve tested positive, now is the time to take it easy. Maybe you’re not feeling too bad, or maybe it’s hit you really hard, but either way, now is not the time to be pushing yourself. Sure, we’ve been watching TV ads for years that chant how we should ‘soldier on’ when sick, but we absolutely shouldn’t – and particularly not when we have Covid-19. Long Covid sufferer Jenene Crossan talked us through her experience and what we can do to best minimise our chances of developing it.

+ Having trouble keeping your sanity? Here’s some podcasts/TV shows/books we’re loving this month, or, maybe it’s a good opportunity to catch up on some TV shows that you’ve missed – here are 11 shows that you need to have watched.

Maybe you’re a true crime fan? Try these podcasts or these documentaries.

Or, need something a bit lighter? Ted Lasso is the perfect feel-good show for iso, but if you’ve watched it already, here’s where to go next!

And, if you’re sick of screens, give our book of the month a go!

It’s important to keep in touch with friends and family right now – some contact from outside your home will make you feel saner! Just make sure you’re not spending toooo much time on social media right now though – it can be awesome to keep in touch and connect with others who are in the same boat as you, but also… yikes, it can quickly become a toxic place. And if Insta is giving you FOMO and making you feel down, don’t be fooled – not everyone out there is dining out, toasting glasses of bubbles, taking holidays, there are A LOT of people who are in your exact situation!

Make a time to have video calls with friends or family – if you’re feeling well enough, schedule a trivia night over Zoom/Teams/Messenger.

Plus, although it feels like lockdown, the world out there is still turning! While now is not exactly the best time to go nuts with your credit card (particularly if you have Covid and are taking all the meds!), but IT IS possible to order things to your home, unlike in those tedious lockdowns. Order a puzzle! Get an adult colouring book! Maybe it’s time to get an air fryer??

Maybe you don’t have Covid and you’re just isolating so have some energy – you could peruse garden stores online and get the basics for a herb garden! Or buy new storage supplies and suss out your pantry or bathroom! The world’s your oyster!

Stay safe everyone!

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