The Facts on Coronavirus: A Nurse Practitioner Explains How to Treat Body, Mind & Spirit by Anna Yoder DNP, APRN, ANP/GNP-BC
As its name implies, coronavirus is a virus, not bacteria. It is spread by droplets. Coronavirus has its link to live animals as the primary source, but is now being spread person to person by respiratory droplets. Like many respiratory viruses, it will cause:
- shortness of breath
- general malaise
Treating Your Body
If you are sick with a respiratory virus do you need to fear having COVID-19, the new novel coronavirus? Here are two questions to ask yourself:
- Have you traveled to cities where coronavirus is present?
- Have you been in contact with someone confirmed to have coronavirus?
If your answer is no, then symptomatic treatment and calming the fears in your mind will be your best treatment. If you are concerned you have influenza, contact you doctor’s office to be tested. Immediate detection and treatment will reduce the proliferation of virus replicating in your respiratory tract and assist you in carelessly reducing transmission to others.
If your answer is yes, then picking up the phone and calling your local health department and physician’s office is your smartest option. You will be directed what to do. You will need to be tested, most likely with an oropharyngeal and nasopharyngeal swab, exactly like being tested for influenza A or B. The lab will use a real-time reverse transcriptase PCR diagnostic panel to assess your epithelial cells to determine if you have COVID-19.
Symptomatic treatment for viral respiratory infections includes:
- physical rest
- self-quarantine (i.e. don’t go to work or public places to spread your germs)
- over-the-counter medicine to improve your cough, runny nose, congestion, fever. etc.
If you have other illnesses like emphysema, COPD, asthma, congestive heart failure or are a smoker, you may need to call your doctor and be assessed for further treatment as you are at higher risk for complications from viral respiratory infections.
Treating Your Mind
Sometimes, irrational fears overtake us when we get sick. Our emotions take over and we imagine the worst. So, we start searching for information, only to find it either confusing or alarming, making matters worse. Sound judgement leaves us. Can you find yourself sick but be at peace, allowing yourself to rest and heal? Yes, you can!
Symptomatic treatment for a fearful mind includes naming your fears aloud or on paper and to yourself or an individual. Tackle each fear for its legitimacy. If its false evidence appearing real, identify what is true and speak this to yourself aloud every time the fear arises. If your fear looks legitimate, identify a plan for addressing the concern and act. Neither staying in false fear nor denying reality will help you.
Treating Your Spirit
Trusting in a power greater yourself can be the best treatment for your spirit or heart. Pray this for yourself and loved ones:
“I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust ... you will not fear ... the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you.” Psalm 91:2,5,7
The video, featuring CBC News medical contributor Dr. Peter Lin, describes what the coronavirus is, where it came from and how its spread. This video is longer than 30 seconds, but we think it's worth it.
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