Health Protocol Violations in Bali Last Holiday Season

Health Protocol Violations in Bali Last Holiday Season

Though we are happy to see more people coming to Bali, we have to admit that opening the border for tourists has a negative impact too. With the positive cases of Covid-19 skyrocketing due to health protocol violations, let us take a moment to step back and inspect what we have done wrong.

While the use of ace masks have been mandatory all across the island, many people are still taking this lightly. Tourists were seen roaming the streets with their masks hanging on the chin, eliminating the effectivity of the masks altogether.

Malls were packed with people, whom despite of their body temperatures, might still be non-symptomatic carriers of the virus; and although they were encouraged to maintain safe distances from fellow visitors, well, it simply wasn’t the case.

As the photos of Health Protocol Violations circulated some weeks ago, headlines in several local outlets included the phrase “naughty bule” for those caught not wearing masks properly — or at all. Bule is an Indonesian word for foreigners, especially Caucasians, and the spots they tend to favour have become a focus for authorities.

Many head to the Badung regency area, where the popular Kuta and Seminyak beaches are located. Here, local authorities have recorded the highest number of coronavirus health protocol violations in Bali, with 8,864 offences occurring up to this week.

“Most of [the offences] were not bringing their masks, not wearing them properly, and some businesses not applying health protocols,” Badung regency Public Order Agency chief I Gusti Agung Kerta Suryanegara told the ABC.

While many of them were local Balinese, Mr Suryanegara said 80 per cent of people who had been fined for violating COVID-19 regulations were foreigners, mostly from Europe. “Some foreigners were found walking on the beach, sitting in restaurants, and riding motorbikes without masks,” he said.

Mr Suryanegara said foreigners who had been caught seemed to underestimate the strength of health protocols in Bali and those who had been fined were “naughty”. But those who committed minor mistakes, such as bringing their mask but not wearing it, were asked to do push-ups or sweep the street.

Although many Australians have been cautioned for not properly wearing masks, none have yet been fined over that. Some, however, were fined because they were “showing resistance” like “talking back”, or not being cooperative, when approached by officers, Mr Suryanegara said.

I’m not saying that Indonesians are well behaved, but fines were given as the [last resort], which means that [those who were fined] didn’t want to comply and were very defensive,” Mr Suryanegara said.

In September, Bali started fining residents caught without a face mask 100,000 rupiah ($9). Overall, the Public Order Agency has recorded more than 15,000 offences in Bali since the mandatory mask rule was introduced. Mr Suryanegara said so far authorities have gathered 15.3 million rupiah ($1,400) from the fines in Badung alone.

Kadek Astika lives in Kerobokan, in Badung regency, and operates a couple of villas in the area. She said the breaching of health protocols during the pandemic showed how outsiders, such as foreigners and tourists, often did not respect local culture.

“Even before the pandemic we have already seen many foreign tourists, particularly the young ones not following the rules, such as riding bikes without helmets or getting drunk and then involved in brawls on the streets,” Ms Astika said.

“Some of them also violated our traditions and values by disrespecting sacred sites with their behaviour when visiting temples.” But Ms Astika said it was not just foreigners or local tourists ignoring the health directives. “Our pecalang [traditional Balinese security forces] has been tirelessly trying to discipline local people too,” she said.

According to the country’s National COVID-19 Task Force, the compliance rate for wearing masks in Bali is 96.5 per cent, while maintaining physical distancing is 92 per cent. That makes the island’s compliance with COVID-19 protocols the best in Indonesia.

Indonesia began rolling out its vaccination program last Wednesday, with President Joko Widodo receiving the first jab of the Chinese-developed Sinovac vaccine. Bali started administering vaccinations the following day.

Throughout the pandemic, more than 850,000 people in Indonesia have been infected and there has been more than 20,000 cases in Bali. Indonesia recorded its highest number of daily cases — 11,557 — on Thursday, two weeks after end-of-year holidays. Tighter restrictions had been imposed in Java and Bali, requiring places including shopping centres, malls, and restaurants to close by 9:00pm.

However, local media reported that authorities were involved in an argument after several foreigners refused to leave a restaurant after the deadline. The video of the dispute was posted on Instagram.

Last week, the Governor of Bali, I Wayan Koster, said since many foreigners were “difficult to manage” the Bali Government would take further action. “Tourists not wearing masks will not be given entry to tourist destinations and restaurants,” Mr Koster said.

“So they will not be given any services if they don’t wear a mask. “That’s our decision … because there are already many violations committed by foreign tourists.” Mr Suryanegara from the Public Order Agency said he hoped the tighter restrictions would “make everyone, not just foreigners, obey the rules”

With the vaccines being distributed across the country, let’s all get the shot and ditch this virus once and for all. Let’s hope for a Covid-free 2021. Like always, stay safe and stay healthy!

New Normal, New Diet – Start Eating Healthy Food

New Normal, New Diet – Start Eating Healthy Food

One of the resolutions in entering a new normal era is to start a healthy life. Starting a healthy life can be done anytime and anywhere, but it takes perseverance in running it every day.

The current uncertain situation in this new normal era, having a healthy body is everyone’s dream. Therefore, before starting a healthy life it is better to find out more about what a healthy life is and how to start the habit.

In starting a healthy life, you must get used to eating healthy foods and exercising regularly. According to Nova, creating your own schedule is a good step to start your healthy journey. By creating a schedule you can plan your meals and exercise program for each week.

Plan your meal program for the next week, complete with a meal schedule, cheat day, and time to exercise. If you are not accustomed to exercising, you can start with light exercises such as pilates and yoga. As for cheat day, Nova suggests planning what meals you want to consume during cheat day and adhere to your plan.

While during the “new normal”, food safety has benefitted from an increased awareness on good practices of personal hygiene, in the future, regulatory frameworks that have a long-term vision and that will ensure consumers’ protection will need to be put in place. In order to facilitate access to safe foods to all, the implementation of regulations will need to be delegated to the industry sector, and the active and informed participation of the consumers will be more critical than ever.

A few months ago, the FMI Foundation challenged a number of food influencers and partners to share some of their best suggestions and advice they would offer people striving to manage various food challenges being presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. These resources are available on the  Family Meals Movement Consumer-Facing site; creating an easily assessable resource library for consumers and industry stakeholders seeking family meal ideas, help and motivation. This diverse collection of helpful guidance covers a gamut of topics, including:

  • Recipes.
  • Food Safety.
  • Shopping, Stocking, and Planning.
  • Family Meals.
  • Creative Hacks.
  • Self-Care.
  • Nutrition assistance programs.

New FMI Foundation-sponsored research, found in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, shows that meals together support a family’s emotional well-being AND enhances its physical health, through encouraging more fruit and vegetable consumption. With this in mind, this year’s National Family Meals Month campaign will focus on helping families enjoy more healthful meals together at home.

If you have made changes to your diet since the pandemic began, you’re far from alone. People have been reported to at least make some change to their habits around eating or food preparation. Sixty percent say they’re cooking at home more, and many say they are buying more packaged foods than usual.

For 15 years, the International Food Information Council (IFIC) has conducted an in-depth annual Food and Health Survey asking 1,000 American adults dozens of questions about their dietary habits, health conditions and attitudes toward food safety, environmental sustainability and the overall food system. Many of the answers are tracked from year to year to help us understand trends in the way we eat, shop and think about our food-related priorities.

This year’s survey results yielded key insights on how the American public is thinking and behaving when it comes to nutrition, food safety and agriculture in a time of incredible upheaval resulting from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Additional surveys fielded during the past six months are further putting into perspective how COVID-19 is altering our approach to food. We’re noticing wide-ranging changes in what we’re eating, how we’re purchasing our food and our attitudes toward its safety and availability.

If you have made changes to your diet since the pandemic began, you’re far from alone. People around the world report at least some change to their habits around eating or food preparation. Sixty percent say they’re cooking at home more, and many say they are buying more packaged foods than usual.

All that time around the house means that over a third of us are also snacking more, a number that our surveys first picked up on in April and has remained constant through late summer. One in three (33%) say that they’re eating more often when they’re bored or not hungry, and nearly the same number (32%) say they’re eating snacks alone more often, an indicator of the shift to a more isolated lifestyle. Parents have been especially hard hit by disruptions to their food routine. For instance, 41% of parents with children under 18 said they are snacking more as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, versus 29% of those without children.

We’re also finding positive trends around consumer attention to healthier eating. In July, nearly 4 people said they were eating healthier now than before the pandemic, with only 10% reporting that they were eating less healthfully. Thirty percent reported snacking on fresh fruits and vegetables and eating healthy snacks more often since the pandemic began.

While it is much more broadly understood by the public today that COVID-19 is not transmitted through food, the early days of the pandemic showed significant concern about coronavirus exposure via food handling or food preparation, with nearly half of consumers in April ranking it as one of their top three most important food safety issues.

When it comes to food, there is no question that the pandemic is forcing us to embrace new eating patterns and reevaluate how we feel about obtaining and preparing our food. But has COVID-19 brought us to a “new normal”? In some areas, like snacking and online grocery shopping, IFIC data shows the pandemic may be accelerating a trend already underway. Other behaviors are likely driven by our increased time at home and reduced mobility, both of which will be heavily influenced by the widespread availability of a vaccine. Future data will show us if what we see today represents any durable change in our attitudes and behaviors toward food.

So, are you ready to change your diet? Share your thought in the comments and let us know what change have you made to your eating habit. Until next time, and stay healthy.

 

 

Drive-thru Covid-19 Test Centers in Bali? A Closer Look at the Urgency of it

Drive-thru Covid-19 Test Centers in Bali? A Closer Look at the Urgency of it

When going through this chaotic cycle of life that Covid-19 had unfortunately taken upon us, it’s often dilemmatic to decide between going outside the house and staying inside; especially when we actually have things to do outside the house.

Similarly, we often hesitate to go to public facilities such as clinic and hospitals; precisely because there are serious chances of getting contaminated with the virus from fellow patients or customers. So what do we do when we get to get tested, without having to co promise our health and taking the chance to get the virus from strangers? Well, many countries have come up with this amazing idea of a drive-thru Covid-19 test center; through which people can conveniently get Covid-19 test without even having to come out from their cars. Neat, right?

For those who develop coronavirus-like symptoms but don’t want to go to hospital too soon, the drive-thru allows a faster and safer Covid-19 screening because it minimizes physical contact between the lab technicians and the test taker. There is no need to step out of your vehicle to get tested, Now, while there have been plenty of such centers available in the capital town Jakarta, there strangely aren’t so many of them available on this expats-packed tiny islands. We truly think it’s about time to get (at least) some more for us here, don’t you think? Anyway, how does this really work?

Well, in a nutshell, health workers carry out rapid tests by taking the blood sample to detect the antibody level. This method, however, is only meant for quicker results and is less accurate than the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method or nasal swab test. Results will be notified through WhatsApp on the same day. Those who test positive for a virus attack will be requested to undergo a swab test, which will examine more accurately if the infection is caused by the novel coronavirus. If the result comes back negative, they will have to retake the test in seven to ten days.

If you need more details, below is the elaborated steps of drive-thru Covid-19 test center that we can gather from the internet:

  1. Before arrival, patients registered online for a 10 minute appointment between 8AM and 2PM.
  2. Registration was organized by vehicle, and each registration included the names, demographics and contact information of the persons who would be inside that vehicle.
  3. Upon arrival to the testing site, patients were greeted at the front of a covered parking structure and were directed by the National Guard to a marked parking space. The parking space had a sign in front of it with a phone number and instructions for one person in the vehicle to text the number with their last name to serve as notification for their vehicle arrival.
  4. The text went to a Registrar, who assigned the vehicle to a Care Team (A-E). The assigned Care Team then called the person who texted, confirmed the registration of those inside, provided anticipatory guidance, and sent a video showing how to self collect a nasal swab.
  5. The Care Team then instructed the car to exit the parking structure and drive to the indicated testing station (#1-10) in the adjacent lot.
  6. Upon arrival to the indicated testing station (#1-10), a member of the assigned Care Tea would run out the labeled test kits (swabs, instructions) and care kits (masks, guidance) to the members of that vehicle, and place them on the table next to the vehicle. The driver would exit the vehicle, pick up the test kits and care kits and then return to their vehicle. The members of the vehicle would perform their own testing swabs and then return the test kits to the table. The vehicle would then drive away with their care kits, opening up the testing station for the next vehicle. In total, there were 10-12 vehicles at a time self-collecting their nasal swabs.
  7. For follow-up, those with positive results were called and informed about isolation and other public health recommendations. Those with negative results were emailed and informed about standard public health recommendations.

Alright, now that we all know how this system works, let’s talk about how the local Bali government tackles Covid-19 and if there is any indication of the island getting a drive-thru Covid-19 test centers soon. According to the news we managed to gather from the internet, there are only a handful, if not a couple, of such facilities available in Bali: one conducted by one of the biggest hospital chain in the nation which has a branch on the island, and another made available by an online medical service application in partnership with local laboratories.

With prices ranging between 175K to just below 1M Indonesian Rupiah, these Covid-19 test centers provide alll kinds of Covid-19 tests such as the IGG and IGM Rapid tests and also the PCR and Antigen Swab tests. Depending on how quick you need the result to come out, you’ll be given the information of the prices even before you come in for the test.

While 2021 has promised us the perfecting of the Covid-19 vaccine, we honestly don’t know how much longer we have to wait for it happen, distributed, and proved safe. If in the meantime we need to hop on a plane and catch a flight, this drive thru Covid-19 test centers will prove very useful. Let’s just hope that they will open more facilities like this in Bali. Until that day, do stay safe and healthy, and please keep doing all those health protocols to keep the virus at bay. Have a great day!

What You Should Do Before and After a PCR Test

As you may have read in our previous articles, there are strict protocols to abide if we want to travel by air; one of which is to provide a PCR (widely known as rapid) test result stating that you are non-reactive to the mischievous C-19.

Failing to provide this single document will deny you access to your flight, even if you have paid for it. In this article, we are going to give you some information on what you have to do before and after taking a PCR test.

When a communicable disease outbreak begins, the ideal response from public health is to begin early and rapid testing. This leads to quick identification/tracing of cases, quick treatment and immediate isolation to avoid the spread of this disease. Early testing also helps to identify high risk contacts; anyone who came into contact with infected people. So, they too can be quickly treated to reduce the intensity of the spread.

Early testing is crucial to treat, isolate or hospitalize people who are infected; depending upon severity of infection. Testing is an important stage in the bigger public health picture for alleviating efforts, helping investigators, spread and contagiousness of the disease and characterize the prevalence.

The long-term testing strategy for COVID-19 must be based on the network of public and accredited private labs sourcing testing consumables from suppliers, whose quality has been vetted by central government agencies.

The main type of tests being used to detect the COVID19 are RT PCR, Antibody Testing and Antigen Testing. Some are more reliable than others; no single test is 100 per cent accurate. There are significant differences between them; in the way they work, but also their advantages and limitations, which are unique to each.

Currently, diagnosis of active infection is done with Reverse transcriptase polymerase Chain Reaction; RT-PCR test, the gold standard.  The virus is made up of a genetic material called RNA. When the virus enters host cells it uses RNA to replicate itself. So, it’s a direct test for detecting COVID -19 viral particles from nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swabs collected and transported via Viral Transport medium (VTM).

The RT-PCR test can only tell whether the person has live or very recently dead virus in their body at the time of sample collection. The likelihood of detecting the virus depends on collection methods, severity of infection and how much time has passed since infection. RT PCR tests are accurate but with high TAT and cost, it requires sophisticated equipment and unidirectional settings, trained personnel to run the tests.

Besides this, Serology tests play an important role for patient care and are crucial for the management and surveillance of the disease. These tests offer insight into the virus’s incidence within populations, including symptomatic or asymptomatic infections. They are important in determining the full scope of the disease, engaging the pandemic, surveillance and rebuilding mutual confidence.

Potentially detect immunity in COVID-19 recovered individuals. These tests identify patients with solving/resolved infections. Potentially detect immunity in individuals allowing them to continue their routines and possibly avoid unnecessary quarantine.

PCR testing needs extracted RNA (genetic material) from swabs. RNA extraction is process which comprises of lysis, binding and washing steps; with incorporation of Internal control(IC). This IC is guaranty of proper RNA extraction and should be read at the time of result interpretation along with other Quality control (QC). Extraction can be done manually, by semi-automated/fully automated instruments.

After extraction; addition of enzymes and primers and probes specific for covid-19 (designed in such a way that it will bind and amplify only & only Covid-19 specific genes) mixed with RNA in particular combination. This procedure also can be performed manually or automated with the help of liquid handler robotic arm systems. PCR uses this RNA for amplification.

The first step in the testing process is to convert the viral RNA into DNA using the enzyme reverse transcriptase so name RT PCR. Once this is done chemicals are used to amplify Covid-19 specific sequence so it can be read by the PCR instrument; Thermal Cycler and with precise software. PCR consists of three steps denaturation, annealing and elongation with exact number of cycles along with specific temperature.

By setting up the threshold results can be analyzed and reported as RNA Detected or Not Detected. This overall series of procedure takes 4-5 hrs.

Follow these instructions before taking a PCR Test:

  1. Do not eat, drink or brush your teeth 30 minutes before you take the test.
  2. Wear a cloth mask, keep your windows up and stay in your vehicle.
  3. Try to do a self quarantine of at least 14 days to minimiza the chance of getting or spreading the virus.

Then, afterwards,  these are the things that you should do:

  1. Since this test takes relatively shorter time to reach a result, there will be some waiting to do. While you wait, don’t take off your mask and maintain a distance of minimum 6 feet from other people.
  2. When the result comes and it’s non-reactive, then congratulations, you can go back to your day doing whatever you need to do that day. Still, the use of a mask is really effectibe to ward off viruses if you need to be around strangers. Keep them on whenever you find yourself in a crowd.
  3. When the result comes back.and it’s reactive, usually you will need a proper swab test. So use your mask and find out how you can get one, and then go home and lock yourself in for at least 14 days. Keep a log of your health progress, and take another PCR test after 14 days.

There you are, some info on what you should do before and after  PCR Test. Good luck and stay healthy!

Self-care while working from home during the coronavirus pandemic

Self-care while working from home during the coronavirus pandemic

While the spread of the Coronavirus is still trying to contain, most people now spend three quarters of their daily time indoors. This is an important step because reducing crowds will reduce the number of people infected with the Corona virus. So of course, it is not easy for everyone, on the other hand many people are forced to go out to work, some people have the privilege of staying indoors safely. Therefore, going nowhere and staying indoors are important contributions to the safety of many people.

  1. Prioritize Sleep

When it comes to maintaining your health and well-being, sleep is always part of the answer. Good and adequate quality sleep keeps your immune system working as well as possible to fight infections such as those caused by the new Corona virus.

Indeed, there is a part of the body’s immune response that occurs only during sleep. Scientists know that sleep is also one of the best ways to control stress, because lack of sleep can make us more sensitive to the effects of stress, increasing our reactions (or overreactions) to stressors. Finally, the brain needs sleep to function. Lack of sleep can make you less patient and focused, and more moody, irritable, and emotional

  1. Avoid Snacking Without A Purpose

Do you spend your days with a pile of snacks now? Instead of imposing strict rules on what you can and cannot eat, try to eat intuitively. It’s not a diet, it’s a way of eating, it’s all about giving your body only what it needs.

Eating intuitively doesn’t limit certain foods or make you count calories. This is a practice where you listen to your body and pay attention to what you need in the moment. Do you need heavy meals or snacks? You eat when you feel hungry, and you stop eating when you feel full.

  1. Reach High Protein Snacks When You Need An Energy Boost

What should you ask when you feel hungry? Maintain a high protein diet to help you get to the end of your to-do list for the day. Protein helps you feel full longer and avoids the energy losses you may experience. Eat boiled eggs, nuts, Greek yogurt, and vegetables.

  1. Keep Stress Relief Foods on Hand

Yes, you read that right. Certain foods can actually have a stress-reducing effect. Think: warm, soothing foods (such as soup or tea) and fatty fish (omega-3s can improve mood). Avocados are packed with vitamins C and B6, which are known to help reduce stress. Dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants, which are great for dealing with stress (enjoy a little, as it’s a calorie dense food). Other beneficial foods include wheat, bananas, oranges, water, and green vegetables.

  1. Practice Kindness and Gratitude

Clinical studies have found that people who regularly practice keeping a gratitude journal (actually writing down what you are grateful for) report better well-being, physical health, and increased optimism about the future. Practicing kindness is sometimes easier said than done (especially when we are in a place where life is really hard), but remember that everyone is going through hard times right now

  1. Take a few minutes to practice diaphragmatic breathing

Calming down and engaging in measured breathing can have a direct effect on your mental and physical state, whether the tension comes from an endless cycle of news or your always annoying housemates. Do your breathing exercises regularly to start or end your day in a positive way, or try them when you need a little more.

  1. Meditate On Your Own

You don’t need any special equipment or space for this one, you can do it anytime, anywhere. Meditation is thinking deeply or focusing your mind for a period of time. What it does: Meditation can help reduce stress, relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety, and regulate negative thinking.

  • Try Relaxing with Music

Turn off the TV and turn on some mood-enhancing notes. Music therapy uses music to help people cope with physical or emotional needs, according to the University of Minnesota. And it has been shown to reduce symptoms in people with mood problems, such as anxiety and depression.

  • Use Social Media with Attention

Social media and other virtual tools let you connect with friends and family even when you’re apart. But they can also have unintended consequences if and when their use becomes excessive or takes up your time. How can you make sure you use it wisely? The more personal your social media interactions, the better, experts say (think of people sending direct messages rather than mindless scrolling). Use these tools on purpose.

Be selective about who you follow and what applications you use. And take the time to disconnect. If you feel isolated, call your friends or family members from time to time instead of making statuses or comments on Facebook.

  1. Avoid Nonstop News Consumption

It is important to stay informed and be aware of important updates in your area, especially those affecting your health. But people don’t have to listen to the same warnings and headlines over and over. Particularly during times when the news can be disappointing, experts recommend limiting news consumption to two or three sources a day to deal with any anxiety it might cause, and checking at predetermined (not continuous) times of the day for updates. Consider making one of your sources your local news source. And if you can, avoid checking the headlines before bed.

  1. Get Your Creativity with Coloring Books and Other Art Therapy

Coloring (or any creative or artistic endeavor, such as drawing, painting, or knitting) can be relaxing for many people. For some people, this is an opportunity to remove distractions and focus on one thing at a time.

For others, it is a way of expressing the emotions they are feeling (maybe you paint in bright, bright colors because you are experiencing strong feelings). Don’t underestimate the power of art to help you overcome it!

Taking Care of Your Mental Health in the Pandemic

Taking Care of Your Mental Health in the Pandemic

Bereavement, isolation, loss of income and fear are triggering mental health conditions or exacerbating existing ones. Many people may be facing increased levels of alcohol and drug use, insomnia, and anxiety.

Meanwhile, COVID-19 itself can lead to neurological and mental complications, such as delirium, agitation, and stroke. People with pre-existing mental, neurological or substance use disorders are also more vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2 infection. They may stand a higher risk of severe outcomes and even death.

How to Protect Your Mental Health

  1. Recognize that your anxiety is completely normal.

If school closures and worrying headlines are making you anxious, you are not the only one. Actually, that is how you should be feeling.

“Psychologists have long recognized that anxiety is a normal and healthy function that alerts us to threats and helps us take measures to protect ourselves”, says Dr. Lisa Damour, expert adolescent psychologist, best-selling author and monthly New York Times columnist.

  1. Find a distraction.

“Psychologists know that when people are in chronically difficult conditions it’s helpful to divide the problem into two categories: things they can do something about, and then things they can do nothing about”, says Dr. Damour.

There’s going to be a lot in that second category right now, and that’s fine, but what can help us cope are distractions. Dr. Damour suggests doing homework, watching favourite movies or reading books, as ways to make it easier for ourselves and to find a balance in everyday life.

  1. Find new ways to connect with friends.

If you want to spend time with your friends while limiting your face time, social media are a great way to connect. Be creative: join TikTok challenges such as #safehands. “I would never underestimate the creativity of teenagers”, says Dr. Damour and adds: “My hunch is that they will find ways to [connect] online that are different from how they’ve been doing it before.”

„[But] it’s not a good idea to have unfettered access to screens and/or social media. That’s not healthy, that’s not smart and it may amplify the anxiety”, says Dr. Damour and recommends making a schedule for social media time together with parents.

  1. Focus on yourself.

Have you wanted for a while now to learn to do something new, to start reading a new book, or to devote time to playing an instrument? Now is the time to do all that.

While some of us enjoy staging at home and the freedom it offers to many aspects of our life (i.e. not having to wear pants during work-as long as you remember not to stand up in front of your laptop during a video meet;) some other take this pretty hard, too. They whom originally enjoy being in a crowd, for example, may have been struggling to keep themselves sane these past months we spend in quarantine.

If you belong to the latter group, please beware. As much as we are trying to stay healthy outside, we should not forget that we also ought to stay healthy inside. Giving yourself a treat every once in a while, for example, is actually suggested. Whether you buy a pretty dress or a skin-care set online, you should give yourself some love and have a me-time at least once a week.

  1. Connect with your feelings

Missing events with friends, hobbies and sports is very disappointing. “These are major losses. They are very upsetting for all, including teenagers”, Dr. Damour says. What is the best way to deal with disappointment? Allow yourself to feel it. “When it comes to having a painful feeling, the only way out is through. Go be sad, and if you allow yourself to do it, you will feel better soon.”

Everyone processes their feelings in a different way. “Some children are going to make art, some are going to want to talk to their friends and use their shared sadness as a way to feel connected in a time when they can’t be together in person, and some children are going to want to find ways to get food to food banks”, says Dr. Damour. It’s important to do what you feel is right and useful.

Enjoying time with the family is aso one thing that can keep your stress level low. Granted, children can cause serious headache sometimes; but let’s admit, we also enjoy seeing them doing what they do, right? Well, as we’re entering the end of October, why not organize a mini trick or treating or even invent other fun things to do as a family on Hallowe’en? Not only you, but the kids will be happy, too. Win-win!

  1. Be kind to yourself and others

Some teenagers are facing online bullying and violence due to coronavirus. “Activating bystanders is the best way to address any kind of bullying”, says Dr. Damour.

For you who live alone, you might choose between using a AI app that can be your virtual friend, or adopt a pet to be your real friend. AI apps have been growing like mushrooms do in rainy season. They must have sensed the need to talk and be social with someone, even if it was not a real person.

Most of these apps are even equipped with therapy features, in which you are able to take therapy sessions with capable consultants at a fracture of the cost you’ll spend in a real therapist’s office.

Sports and meditation are also known for their therapeutic therapy. While jogging through those lush paddy fields, you have all the time in the world to reminisce and really contemplate about things in life that you can have nowhere else. Both sports and meditation are good to have as a daily habit to help you stay healthy inside and out.

If you’re still feeling down after all that, you might want to have a closer look and have yourself checked by professionals. Please take care of your selves, people! What about you, what do you do to stay happy and healthy inside?