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As most of us are aware by now, COVID-19, or Coronavirus, is spreading through our global communities. At the time of this newsletter, there are no confirmed cases in Maine. However, the virus will likely spread to Maine at some point.

At New England Naturopathic Health, our focus always is on education and prevention. In this newsletter, we will answer common questions about coronavirus, key preventative steps to take, and what you can do to help bolster your immune system if you’re at risk.

What is COVID-19?

There are many types of coronaviruses. Some affect humans, and others that affect animals. Some of the human coronaviruses cause mild upper-respiratory tract illnesses, like the coronavirus that causes the common cold.

Others can be more severe, like the coronavirus that causes SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome). COVID-19 is a new virus for humans, meaning we have not seen this form of coronavirus cause illness in humans before. Because of this, we do not have immunity to it, nor approved medications or vaccines to treat it, which allows for rapid spread through communities.

How does the virus spread?

COVID-19 is believed to be transmitted person-to-person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These respiratory droplets land in the mouth or nose of people who are within 6 feet and cause a spread of infection. You may get sick from touching a surface with the virus on it, then touching your own mouth, nose, or eyes, but this is not the main way the virus spreads. People are thought to be contagious when they are the most symptomatic (are the sickest they are going to get) from the virus.

What are the symptoms & who’s at risk?

The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

The majority of reported cases are mild. More severe cases have been reported in older adults and people of all ages with significant underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes. As far as has been reported so far, children have not been significantly impacted.

Basic Precautions & Recommendations

The following are everyday precautions to take:

  • Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or having been in public.
  • If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • As much as possible, avoid touching surfaces in public places such as elevator buttons, door handles, and handrails. Use a tissue or your sleeve to cover your hand if you do touch one of these surfaces.
  • Avoid shaking hands.
  • Avoid touching your face, nose, eyes, etc.
  • Avoid crowds, especially in poorly ventilated spaces.
  • Avoid all non-essential travel, including plane trips and cruise ships.
  • If you are at higher risk of developing more significant symptoms, you should stay home as much as possible if there is an outbreak in your community.

Naturopathic Recommendations

In addition to the above suggestions, we recommend supporting the foundations of health:

  • Drink plenty of water every day.
  • Aim for 7-9 hours of quality sleep per night.
  • Eat enough throughout the day, including a protein and fat source with each meal to keep blood sugar stable.
  • Spend time with people you love.
  • Reduce stressors as much as possible. Stress does a number on our health. It is a major suppressor of our immune system.

Specific naturopathic therapies can boost your immune system and keep you healthy until the risk of the outbreak has passed, including the following:

  • Ozone Therapy: Medical-grade ozone stimulates the immune system and increases blood flow to targeted tissues. Ear and nasal ozone specifically targets the respiratory system’s tissues and helps bolster these tissues against the coronavirus. This is particularly helpful for patients prone to allergies, sinus infections, and sore throats.
  • Hydrotherapy: Hydrotherapy improves immunity by utilizing hot and cold water contrast applications in addition to low volt sine wave stimulation to the lungs and other essential organs of the torso. Hydrotherapy is beneficial for patients with asthma or those prone to lung infections and other respiratory illnesses.
  • Supplements: We suggest taking an immune-boosting supplement like Phytogen, Super Lysine, Astragalus, Berberine Complex, Argentyn Nasal Spray, or Immune Glycerite until the threat of COVID-19 has passed. Please speak with your doctor to determine which supplement is best for you.

As always, we are here to support you and help keep you and your families healthy. If you would like to discuss more specifically what this looks like for you, please call our office to make an appointment.

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