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Beyond hand washing: Try these 6 ideas to stay healthy

What can you do to fight coronavirus after you’ve washed your hands, started telecommuting, cancelled all business and social events, and stocked the pantry? Here are 6 ideas for physical and mental well-being:

1. Schedule virtual events
We’re all seeing lots of cancellations ranging from family get-togethers to large-scale business events. Can personal and business events be held via FaceTime, SKYPE, GoTo Meeting or another online platform? We’re already watching Earth Day events and even weddings headed in that direction. What about family reunions, book club dates or business meetings? Think about the opportunities that technology can provide.

2. Start spring cleaning with EPA-approved disinfectants
With cleaning products flying off the shelves, the Environmental Protection Agency on Monday just added nearly 200 additional products to its EPA-registered disinfectant list.

“With this expanded list, EPA is making sure Americans have greater access to as many effective and approved surface disinfectant products as possible and that they have the information at their fingertips to use them effectively,” said Andrew Wheeler, EPA administrator.

The list meets the EPA’s criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2, which is the cause of COVID-19. To make the list more consumer friendly, information in the table is now sortable, searchable and printable, and can be viewed on a mobile device. Find the EPA list here.

3. Clean off your cell phone
Think of all the electronics you touch multiple times a day, and create a daily schedule for disinfecting them. This includes your cell phone, keyboard, computer mouse, tablet, remote control and all electronic media. There are disinfectant wipes designed for such cleaning, but the easiest way is to use a soft, linen-free cloth dipped in isopropyl alcohol. Wipe off cell phone screens and the top sides of each key on your keyboard or remote. Be sure to clean the bottom or back sides, too.

4. Get outside to relieve stress
With social distancing and lots of public event closures, it’s more difficult to find ways to get out of the house. So, when weather cooperates, get outside every day. Take a walk around your neighborhood, get the kids out on their bikes, or take a frisbee or soccer ball to a park for some activity. If the kids play on park equipment, be sure to wash hands as the coronavirus can remain on plastic and stainless steel for up to three days, according to the National Institutes for Health Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But, a little play, with a few precautions, can be great for mental health.

5. Call your elderly relatives
Older people are the most affected, not only by the virus, but by social isolating. So, now’s the time to give elderly relatives and neighbors a daily phone call. Or have the kids create cards to mail or email to them. The World Health Organization says it is safe to receive mail or a package where COVID-19 has been reported.

6. Instead of hoarding, offer to share
Who can’t find toilet paper? If you stocked up with more than you need, consider offering some to others who didn’t get to the store in time. What else might you be able to leave on someone’s doorstep? Just wash your hands before handling it, and let the recipient know you’ve taken care not to share germs with your gift. Sharing is always good for our mental health, especially when our world is so anxious.


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Diane Capps
4 years ago

Powell Gardens announced that it is closed. This is NOT a good idea!!! There are never big crowds there unless there is a special event. This is exactly the kind of destination people need to go to in these difficult times!!! Please re-open, Powell Gardens!

Gerald Shechter
Gerald Shechter
4 years ago
Reply to  Diane Capps

Why not allow access to the grounds even when the building is closed?