Answer the following in Yes or No.
Do you practice social distancing?
Do you wear a mask while stepping out?
Do you sanitize your hands regularly, everyday?
Do you worry about having to go to the hospital for your dialysis procedure?
2020 has been a challenging year that has taught us to value many things, especially our health. Ironically today, being ‘positive’ can make you feel negative, but being ‘negative’ gives you a positive feeling!!
While most people are taking general precautions, dialysis patients have to be extra careful, and ensure that they visit only certified, Covid-free hospitals or clinics. Also, they need to be assured that the medical facility they are going to is following Government guidelines & protocols to make sure that there is a near-zero infection transfer risk.
However, even in this scenario, patients should focus on taking steps towards a healthier and more joyful life.
As most doctors will affirm, an optimistic attitude change can boost the immune system.
Senior Nephrologist at Apollo Dialysis Clinics, Bangalore, suggested few things that one can do, towards achieving this:
- Keep a cheerful attitude towards life. Every single person has their share of burdens as well as brightness, but if one has a smile while dealing with every situation, it will make life easier.
- Don’t feel like a victim. This is a tough health situation, of course. But, if you keep feeling self-pity, or complain about ‘Why me?’, then you will always feel stuck. Be the one in control by choosing how you respond to challenges.
- Count Your Blessings. In fact, don’t just count them – write them down. You will be amazed at how many things you have to be grateful for. Keep a notebook, and do this daily. Each time you feel low, go back and read your list and your moods will be lifted.
- Watch what you eat. The best way to go about this is to consult a nutritionist who can work with you on planning your diet. Eg. By cutting down certain fruits or high protein foods, you will feel lighter and reduce the chances of further complications.
- Plan in advance. Especially if you’re going to travel. Inform your doc, and also find out contact info of dialysis clinics at the place you’re going to. Also, be extra careful of your diet while travelling.
- Don’t hide your health condition. By informing your close friends, colleagues and a few trusted neighbours, you will be doing something life-saving. Make sure you give them the contact of your family member and your clinic. This way, in case of an emergency, they know what to do.
- Exercise. Yoga, breathing exercises and walking are the three safest and most helpful things recommended for people of all ages and health conditions. While practising yoga or pranayam, take the help of a certified instructor, and go slow.
- Meditate. A calm mind is capable of achieving more in less time, without getting confused, agitated or upset. Find time to sit down and meditate for 10 to 15 minutes a day. If you haven’t meditated before, you can sit comfortably, close your eyes and watch your breathing. Slow it down gently, and just relax. Once you feel ready, open your eyes, gently move and then get back to your work.
- Watch what you watch: Mindful consumption of media is essential. Whether it’s the news that you watch, your selection of films and shows, always pick content that will keep you upbeat. Watching excessively aggressive material can drain you mentally and emotionally. Also, completely avoid going online to Google for symptoms! There is too much inaccurate and even incorrect medical information online, that will do more harm than good.
- Remind yourself that you are fine. Once you mentally keep repeating ‘I am healthy, whole and complete’ as many times as possible, you will set into motion your body’s happy hormones and chemicals, that have the capacity to strengthen your immune system and heal you.
The information here is not a substitute for any medical diagnosis. For more info you can contact Apollo Dialysis Clinics, which conducts regular sessions on this for their patients at every center.
Author is a Nephrologist of Apollo Dialysis Clinics. Currently Apollo Dialysis Clinics operates 70+ clinics at 60+ locations in Delhi-NCR (Gurgaon), Telengana, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The company has also recently launched Home Dialysis Services in Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi, Guwahati.