I was asked if living post stroke put me in a high risk category? Yes, and no. It depends on what was the cause of the stroke, or in my case strokes. If you have a history of cardiac problems like high blood pressure coupled with diabetes, or if your cardiac problems lead to breathing difficulties...you are in the high risk category. That pretty much covers all ischemic stroke survivors.
For me, I've got an autoimmune disorder having Fibromyalgia, and arthritis to compound my congenital low O2 capacity coupled with asthma (from being born prematurely), heart disease, stroke, and numerous other factors puts me firmly in the high risk category. I know this so I plant my hinny at home during most of the winter and early spring months.
So having a tri-county lockdown is no real skin off my nose. I'm already in semi isolation mode. Even when I worked in the medical field, I used universal precautions before it was a thing that medical folks had to do. Frequent hand washing was a given. I didn't want to catch everyone else's cooties. If I did manage to catch a bug (viral or bacterial), I'd ultimately carry it home to my spouse and children making it triple whammy hard on me. I just said, "NO, I'm not going to do it." My spouse and children got their pneumovax and flu shots when due in December. The average length of active protection for the flu shot is 3-4 months only. In south GA and FL, we were in tank tops and shorts until almost Christmas each year. But for me, there was no protective shots. I'd have to take care of everyone else too. Yes, I had to sign a release wherever I worked in health care saying if there were an outbreak, I'd be sent home without pay until it was over.
I'm not mysophobic (fear of germs), but I am aware of germs and how easily they are transmitted.
So how do you cope when you are a stroke survivor?
- Avoid contact with others. They may not know they are infected. They be showing no symptoms yet, but still be able to infect you. Maintain a six-foot distance. Use drive-thrus and pick up services. Many places allow you to call in an order for you to pick up when ready.
- Testing has shown that viruses can live on and be passed on inanimate objects if an infected coughs, sneezes, or transmits any bodily fluid on an object...you catch it. Keep this in mind with you order anything for pick up. Wash all fruits and vegetables, bags and cartons brought int your house. Somebody or many somebodies touched your groceries before you got it.
- Remember, this includes all clothing worn in public. Make a habit of changing your clothing upon entering your house and putting them directly in the washing machine. Better yet, take a full shower. Line your hampers with a plastic trash bag. It saves you from washing/disinfecting the cloth liner or hamper every week. How many times have you been out in public and someone coughed or sneezed?
- As far as food goes, break out a cookbook or go online and find tasty recipes. I'm a huge fan of cook once eat many times. Find about 5-7 recipes that feed a crowd. Divide into meals and freeze or can the rest. I did this and have a month's worth of heat and eat meals. Remember, if you do get sick, having already prepared meals is a godsend.
- Have a contact person or persons you can call daily or every coupe of days. being alone isn't as bad if you can talk to someone. Quarantine or stay at home doesn't mean you can't go outside. Feel free to take a walk, but keep in mind the six-foot distance. It might be a good thing to carry disposable gloves with you. Remember, what I said about your clothes.
- Wash your hands frequently and try not to touch your face. The most frequent virus and bacteria transmittal ports are from touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- I say wash your hands, but I'm talking about any exposed skin from your hands up. If you are wearing long sleeves, washing your hands and wrists are fine, but if you are in short sleeves, it's up to your upper arms.
This is why I wrote, "Are You a Survivalist or a Prepper?" back in 2012. It is a how to prepare for short and long term SHTF scenarios like now. I even offered it for free to a number of individuals and groups. No, I'm not trying to sell you the book. I only use it as an example. For us, the SHTF back in May and my stores have carried us through since then. The garden failing last year, is the reason my cupboard is almost bare now. I'm semi concerned if this goes on or worsens over the next month. I'll continue to be concerned until the garden produces this year.
Y'all have a blessed and safe day!
Nothing is impossible.