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Staying Healthy in a COVID-19 World


COVID-19 has changed our daily lives in ways none of us were prepared for, and navigating this new normal isn’t easy.

A day that used to involve attending in-person classes, spending lots of time outdoors with friends, and not worrying about how far to distance yourself from others looks a lot different now.

But you’re not in it alone, and we’re here to help. Nurse May and the Student Health Center have come to the rescue.

Here are their tips on how you can stay healthy in a COVID-19 world.

Promote well-being.

During this time, it’s important to maintain a healthy, well-balanced diet. Don’t skip out on the fruits and veggies, no matter how much you want to, and opt for high-protein foods. We know that a trip to your favorite fast food place is usually the move, but not right now. What you’re putting in your body can help boost your immune system and keep you healthy!

Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water can help flush out toxins.

Get the appropriate amount of sleep. We know this is hard in college, but work ahead on assignments, and don’t be afraid to ask a professor for help. Sleep is essential, especially if you tested positive.

Take time to be outside. This might be the hardest thing to do when encouraged to social distance and stay indoors to slow the spread. But remember to take the time to get some exercise. Go for a walk around campus. Head to Fremont Lakes to just sit and get some fresh air. Play a game of sand volleyball at Miller Hall. Have a socially-distanced picnic outside with friends. Fresh air and sunlight not only keep you physically healthy but are also crucial for mental health.

Relax. Don’t be afraid to allow yourself some alone time to decompress.

Wear your mask. This is super important to keep yourself and others safe. Whether you’re in the library studying with friends, watching a movie in your residence hall lobby, or eating lunch in the Caf, always make sure to wear your mask. And if you don’t have one, Student Affairs can provide one for you!

Plan ahead.

Here are a few items you should keep stocked in the event you start to show symptoms:

  • Thermometer
  • Tylenol and/or ibuprofen
  • Cough drops/syrups or honey
  • Allergy medicines
  • Use cold medicines sparingly. If you can breathe through your nose – even if you have congestion – avoid cold medicines if you don’t absolutely need them. It can actually make your symptoms worse if you use it without needing to.
  • Basic easy to fix food:
    • Applesauce
    • Broths/soups
    • Crackers
    • Mints
    • Teas
    • Water and other beverages
  • Vicks vapor rub
  • Humidifier or extra towels/washcloths. Humidifiers can be pricey, so talk mom into buying you one as the air starts to get dry with winter coming.
  • Daily self-care items: toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, etc.

What happens if you get sick?

Report your symptoms to Student Health.

Hydrate — Hydrate — Hydrate. If you get dehydrated while you’re sick, you’ll be sick longer. Be sure to stay hydrated!

Keep a light diet. As hard as it might be, make sure to cut out fatty, fried foods. While we’re sick, our body is trying hard to recuperate itself, and our stomach works hard to process food. If we keep eating hard to digest food, it can throw us into a stomach illness, and nobody wants that.

Take medications if needed.

Get some rest. Work with your professors on assignments so you can prioritize sleep. Your body needs sleep to recuperate and fight off illnesses.

Remember: self-care is important. Disconnect from the noise and unplug from social media. Put on a cozy playlist. Journal your thoughts. Meditate or read a good book. Binge that Netflix show you’ve been wanting to.

Follow the rules to help others stay healthy. It’s essential to always wear your mask, wash your hands, and give others enough space regardless if you’re sick or not.

With flu season approaching, how do you know if your symptoms are because of COVID-19?

Air on the side of caution. If you start showing symptoms and aren’t sure, communicate with Nurse May.

Student Health can test on campus through Test Nebraska. And if you end up testing negative, there is no harm in playing it safe and protecting others.

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