COVID-19 is one of the worst nightmare all have faced for last two years. Many people have suffered. Large numbers of people have succumbed. Hospitals are full with huge numbers of patients. Those who survived are also facing difficulties.
WHAT IS POST VIRAL FATIGUE
Post-viral fatigue is when you have an extended period of feeling unwell and fatigued after a viral infection.
It’s very common in covid era. Many people are facing gross fatigue after recovering from covid. Fatigue is a normal part of the body’s response to fight a viral infection such as COVID-19. Fatigue is likely to continue for some time after the infection has cleared. COVID is a stressor. Our body’s typical response to a stressor is to fight, flight, or freeze. We developed this ability thousands of years ago when we needed a burst of energy to fend off a saber-toothed tiger attack, for example. It’s a short-term response that is supposed to happen for a few minutes.
SYMPTOMS OF POST-COVID FATIGUE
- Physical and mental fatigue
- Increased irritability
- Reduced work performance
- Inability to complete everyday tasks
- Increased isolation
- Physical weakness
HOW TO COUNTER FATIGUE
AT INITIAL STAGE
Please follow government guidelines. If you deteriorate, seek immediate medical help following government guidelines. Early treatment has saved many patients. Get treated by physician as soon as possible in case of cold and fever.
TAKE ADEQUATE REST
Rest is very important for your body as it fights off infection. You need to rest both your body and mind. Keep away from television, phones and social media to keep away from stress. Listen relaxing music. Do meditate and use relaxation techniques.
Sleep helps in modulation of immune system. Sleep well for minimum 8 hours.Make sure you follow healthy sleep habits: ensure your room is as dark as possible, have a bedtime routine, and avoid caffeine, eating late and using electrical items before bed. Sleep hygiene
NUTRITION & WATER
Take high-protein diet with sufficient water. Hydration is very important at the time of fever. Fever causes water loss.
Try to move around. Don’t sit idle. But never do heavy work. Just keep yourself mobilized within your limit.Get up and move around slowly and gently a few times each day. This will keep your body mobile and help with circulation.
LIMIT YOUR ACTIVITIES
Physical and cognitive (thinking) activities use energy. Try to do only a small number of these activities each day, including basic activities of daily living, such as washing and dressing. Don’t work unless you are complete recovered.
If after self isolation and you are improving,Slowly try a small amount of light activity that is manageable (probably less than you think) with regular rests. Be mindful that you may feel more tired the next day. Be realistic and kind to yourself. Start thinking activities. Start low and go slow. Take adequate rest.
START SMALL WORK
It will be difficult to work the same intensity as before. Do small work increase it slowly. You may need longer off work than initially anticipated. Delay joining work. Have fun and decrease stress level. Allow others to help with day-to-day tasks so you can save energy for the activities you enjoy.
You may start feeling better gradually. Your recovery from post-viral fatigue could take several months to a year or more. As you start to gradually improve, remember to keep a balance of quality rest, routine and fun activities. Stress and worry use energy, so give yourself time and be kind to yourself.
Use respirometer for increasing respiratory work. Don’t do heavy respiratory exercise like PRANAYAM soon after recovery. After complete recovery can start it.
If the fatigue doesn’t improve soon, visit a Neurologist for treatment of fatigue. Several mitochondrial cocktails are used for recovery from fatigue.
Post covid times are difficult times. Awareness can help in combating fatigue in many patients.