Health Check Programme for Recovered COVID-19 Patients – Your Self-help Kit for Post COVID-19 Conditions (Long COVID)
According to information from the World Health Organization (WHO), over 600 million people in the world have been diagnosed with COVID-19 so far. Approximately 10-20% of people infected with the disease may continue to experience mid- and long-term effects of COVID-19, which are collectively known as “Post COVID-19 condition” or “Long COVID”. Common symptoms of long COVID include fatigue, shortness of breath, cognitive dysfunction, poor memory, headache, pain (e.g. chest pain, joint pain), abnormal sense of smell and taste and may have an impact on everyday functioning. As defined by WHO, long COVID is the symptoms occurring usually 3 months from the onset of COVID-19 and lasting for at least 2 months.
At present, scientists do not yet know the exact cause of the post COVID-19 conditions, but they see the following potential reasons. Firstly, the patient's immune system is disrupted by the virus from COVID-19, causing the immune system to be active and damage the body despite the patient has recovered and has no symptoms. In addition, viruses can also cause blockage of blood vessels and damage to the cell organelle - mitochondria. The mitochondria are often referred to as the powerhouse of the cell. A malfunctioning of this organelle will lead to fatigue and weakness in the body. It is also possible that the viruses have not been eradicated from the body. They may hide in mucous membranes, fascia or endothelial cells of blood vessels, causing gastrointestinal discomfort, muscle pain and other conditions.
What can I do to help myself if I have long COVID? The first thing: your body gets enough rest and sleep. Secondly, do not exercise too hard. Vigorous exercise exhausts the vital energy of a patient when he/she has just recovered from a serious illness. At this moment, milder exercises, such as walking and tai chi, should be practised to rebuild breathing and lung function. Thirdly, a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables should be taken into account to help strengthen the body's immune system. Reduce the consumption of fried foods and desserts as they can be a burden to the body and hinder the immune system.
If symptoms persist or become more severe, it is recommended that you seek medical advice immediately or arrange the Health Check Programme for Recovered COVID-19 Patients. In this way, the recovered patient will be able to understand his or her physical condition and administer the right medication to help improve long COVID.