Combating long-haul COVID-19 with tips from a physician

Coronavirus

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — You’ve probably heard about “long-haul” COVID-19 cases or people who experience lingering symptoms long after their COVID-19 diagnosis. In fact, some of these symptoms can last for months or years even if they only had what is considered a “mild” case.

Dr. Thomas Hordt, a physician at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital, says some of the most common long-haul problems are shortness of breath, fatigue and brain fog.

Hordt says practicing deep breathing by placing your hand at the bottom of your sternum and trying to push your hand out while you breathe is a good way to get your diaphragm engaged and help combat shortness of breath.

For chronic fatigue, he says slow and steady is the key to recovery. Start with 10 minutes of walking. After two weeks, increase it to 15 minutes a day.

Brain fog can be helped by making lists or having clocks and calendars around as reminders. Hordt says patience is key. Expect peaks and valleys in recovery, but as long as you are seeing improvement you are heading in the right direction.

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