With the current lockdown lookdown likely to carry on into March, making it a year of restrictions, how can we stay well? Here are 10 top tips from a GP.
1. Follow a routine – this gives your day structure. Try to get up and go to bed at the same time. If working from home, make time for lunch and take breaks. Don’t forget to make time for exercise.
2. Eat Well – eating nutritious meals is good for both physical and mental health.
3. Keep Hydrated – we need enough fluids for the body to function properly.
4. Avoid Excess – Try not to form any unhealthy habits like drinking to much caffeine or alcohol. It’s tempting to form unhealthy habits as a way of coping with stress.
5. Take Time to Switch Off – Have digital breaks. Go for a walk or take a bath, leaving devices off.
6. Send Time in Nature – Either by leaving the house or just watching from the window, taking 5 minutes to notice different aspect of the natural environment helps to reduce stress.
7. Maintain Relationships – Spending time apart from loved ones has been the toughest part of lockdown for most. Writing letters or sending cards is a great alternative to video calls and creates tangible connections to a loved one.
8. Protect Your Children – Try to be a positive role model to help them manage uncertainty. Discuss how they are feeling and things that have made them happy. Make plenty of time for play.
9. Be Kind- Some days will be easier than others, be kind to yourself and to those around you, be patient.
10. Seek Support – Lockdown isolation can be overwhelming. If you are struggling, reach out to someone. If you can’t talk to a friend or family member, contact your GP or a support organisation.