The Panhandle Health District has a hotline dedicated to assisting the public. If you have any questions about coronavirus or think you may be displaying symptoms, call 1-877-415-5225. Please call this number before visiting a physician’s office or emergency department, they will direct you where to get testing.
Think you may have coronavirus?
Here’s what to do.
I am pasting a link to a pdf article written by Dr. Mercola. In it, he describes how the focus of care is to support the lungs and boost your immune system. He describes research done on SARS virus with quercetin, resveratrol, n-acetyl-cysteine (NAC), vitamin D3 and other support. I have put together a protocol I am using with my family and the supplements I am recommending to patients. Dr. Toby's Immune Support. You can use this link here or go to the handout section of this website to download other supporting materials.
Dr. Mercola's article - Essential Nutrition to Protect Yourself From The Corona Virus.
He says According to Peter Horby, professor of emerging infectious diseases and global health at the Centre of Tropical Medicine and Global Health at the University of Oxford, Novel Coranavirus Infected Pneumonia (NCIP) has the hallmark signs of "classic viral pneumonia," and since there are currently no antivirals available for NCIP, the focus of care is to support the lungs and other organs until the patient recovers.
I pasted an abstract below which looks at the importance of Vitamin D status and viral pneumonia in children. Even though children are effected less by the Covid-19 virus, this supports the idea that vitamin D3 sufficiency is very important to help decrease the chances of developing viral pneumonia.
There are things you can do to reduce your chances of getting COVID-19. These steps are a good idea for everyone, but especially for people age 65 years or older or who have other health problems:
●Wash your hands with soap and water often. This is especially important after being in public and touching other people or surfaces. Make sure to rub your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds, cleaning your wrists, fingernails, and in between your fingers. Then rinse your hands and dry them with a paper towel you can throw away.
If you are not near a sink, you can use a hand gel to clean your hands. The gels with at least 60 percent alcohol work the best. But it is better to wash with soap and water if you can.
●Avoid touching your face with your hands, especially your mouth, nose, or eyes.
●Try to stay away from people who have any symptoms of the infection.
●Avoid crowds if possible. If you live in an area where there have been cases of COVID-19, try to stay home as much as you can.
●Experts do not recommend wearing a face mask if you are not sick, unless you are caring for someone who has (or might have) COVID-19.
If someone in your home has COVID-19, there are additional things you can do to protect yourself:
●Keep the sick person away from others – The sick person should stay in a separate room and use a separate bathroom if possible.
●Use face masks – The sick person should wear a face mask when they are in the same room as other people. If you are caring for the sick person, you can also protect yourself by wearing a face mask when you are in the room. This is especially important if the sick person cannot wear a mask.
●Be extra careful around body fluids – If you will be in contact with the sick person's blood, mucus, or other body fluids, wear a disposable face mask, gown, and gloves. If any body fluids touch your skin, wash your hands with soap right away.
●Clean often – It's especially important to clean things that are touched a lot. This includes counters, bedside tables, doorknobs, computers, phones, and bathroom surfaces. Some cleaning products work well to kill bacteria, but not viruses, so it's important to check labels. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a list of products here: www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2020-03/documents/sars-cov-2-list_03-03-2020.pdf. See earlier blog for info on Thymol products.
●Wash hands – Wash your hands with soap and water often (see above).
Thymol botanical disinfectants are a safe alternative to chemical hand sanitizers like Purell. We are using CleanWell, Benefect and Seventh Generation products currently in the office. These products are in shortage in stores right now. We should be having some Benefect available for patients to purchase in the coming days. I am pasting below some info from the sister companies Benefect and CleanWell below.
Do Disinfectants Protect Against Novel Coronaviruses?
Per the EPA, coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the COVID-19 outbreak, are enveloped viruses. That means they’re one of the easiest to kill with the appropriate disinfectant product. Under the EPA Emerging Pathogen Guidance, EPA-registered disinfectant products that have registered efficacy against at least one large or one small non-enveloped virus are eligible for use against an enveloped emerging viral pathogen.
The EPA list referenced by the CDC includes disinfecting products that have the Emerging Pathogen Claim designation. The list is updated as products are added to it. CleanWell has submitted for approval to be added to this list.
CleanWell®’s Disinfectants Kill 99.99% of Germs and Cold and Flu Viruses. *Thymol, the active ingredient in our Botanical Disinfecting Wipes and Disinfectant Sprays, is EPA-approved and proven to kill over 99.99% of common household germs. *Specifically – Influenza A virus, (including the Pandemic 2009 H1N1 Influenza A virus), Influenza A Avian (H3N2) virus, Norovirus, Rhinovirus type 37, Salmonella enterica, Staphylococcus aureus, Methicillin Resistant S. aureus (MRSA), Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and others on hard, nonporous surfaces.
Does CleanWell® Protect Against Novel Coronavirus?
CleanWell® has recently submitted our Disinfecting Wipes and Disinfectant Sprays for approval under the Emerging Pathogen Claim to cover SARS-CoV-2.
CleanWell® personal careUse on skin (FDA regulated)Hand Soap Is Your First Line of DefenseThe CDC and WHO recommend washing your hands with soap and water as the first and best defense against fighting germs and viruses. If soap and water are not available, they recommend using an alcohol-based (60% or more) hand sanitizer. This guidance is not new for the current Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) situation; it has always been their recommendation for fighting germs in an effort to stay healthy.
What About CleanWell® Hand Sanitizers?
CleanWell® Botanical Hand Sanitizers are proudly free of alcohol and harsh chemicals (including: Triclosan, Benzalkonium Chloride, Parabens) and are non-flammable. Our products provide consumers with an alternative that moisturizes with aloe and oats and is great for kids or those with sensitive skin.
How Effective Are CleanWell® Hand Sanitizers?
Thymol, the plant-based active ingredient in our hand sanitizing products, does kill germs botanically. We have 3rd party data to support the effectiveness of our products against many types of organisms; however, we cannot publish the specifics of this testing as the FDA prohibits manufacturers from making viral reduction claims, particularly about novel coronavirus. This applies to all brands, even those with the CDC recommended 60% alcohol active. Additionally, testing for this novel coronavirus is unavailable, so no hand sanitizer can make a kill claim at this time. We continue to work with the FDA as it implements its regulatory plan for hand sanitizers as a product category.
Tips for Reducing Your Risk of Infection.
It is important to keep in mind that while hand sanitizer does reduce the most common germs and bacteria, no hand sanitizer kills them all. The most effective methods for combating germs and viruses remain the same—wash your hands, disinfect surfaces, refrain from touching your face, and avoid contact with those who are sick
What is COVID-19?
Coronavirus disease 2019, or "COVID-19," is an infection caused by a specific virus called SARS-CoV-2. It first appeared in late 2019 in the city of Wuhan, China. People with COVID-19 can have fever, cough, and trouble breathing. Problems with breathing happen when the infection affects the lungs and causes pneumonia.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that get their name for spikes on their surface, resembling a crown (or “corona”, in Latin). Coronaviruses can cause mild illnesses, such as the common cold, and occasionally, coronaviruses are associated with more severe illnesses. We have had a few coronaviruses move across the globe, including SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), first recognized in 2003, and MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) in 2012-14, and now COVID-19.
Viruses attack cells by attaching to receptors on the outside of the cells. Some individuals may have more of the type of receptor that the virus latches onto to get into the cell than other individuals. Some people might not even have any of the receptors that the virus targets which could make them immune to attack by that particular virus. This genetic variability in people may explain why some people who are seemingly healthy are at greater risk and get sick.
Underlying factors such as the presence of lung disease where lung tissue is already damaged such as emphysema can increase the likelihood of both getting the infection and of having it be more severe. In China most of the serious cases and deaths have reportedly been in men over the age of 65. A friend from China told me he believes this is likely because around 50% of men in China smoke while only about 2% of women smoke. For many infections like the influenza virus the very young and the very old are often at the most risk. This is because their immune systems do not work as well. For older individuals the risk of severe complications is also increased if there are other medical problems such as heart or kidney disease.
How is COVID-19 spread?
COVID-19 mainly spreads from person to person, similar to the flu. This usually happens when a sick person coughs or sneezes near other people. Doctors also think it might be possible to get sick if you touch a surface that has the virus on it and then touch your mouth, nose, or eyes.
COVID-19 began in China. But it has spread quickly, and there are cases in many other countries, too, including the United States. Most of these happened when people got the infection and then traveled to another country. But in some cases, the virus then spreads to other people. Because of this, there are now smaller outbreaks in several different countries.
From what experts know so far, COVID-19 seems to spread most easily when people are showing symptoms. It is possible to spread it without having symptoms, too, but experts don't know how often this happens.
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Symptoms usually start a few days after a person is infected with the virus. But in some people it can take even longer for symptoms to appear.
Symptoms can include:
Most people have mild symptoms. Some people have no symptoms at all. But in other people, COVID-19 can lead to serious problems like pneumonia, not getting enough oxygen, or even death. This is more common in people who are older or have other health problems. While children can get COVID-19, they seem less likely to have severe symptoms.
Should I see a doctor or nurse?
If you have a fever, cough, or trouble breathing and might have been exposed to COVID-19, call your doctor or nurse. You might have been exposed if any of the following happened within the last 14 days:
●You had close contact with a person who has the virus – This generally means being within about 6 feet of the person.
●You lived in, or traveled to, an area where lots of people have the virus – The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has information about which areas are affected. This can be found on their website: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html.
●You went to an event or location where there were known cases of COVID-19 – For example, if multiple people got sick after a specific gathering or in your workplace, you might have been exposed.
If your symptoms are not severe, it is best to call your doctor, nurse, or clinic before you go in. They can tell you what to do and whether you need to be seen in person. If you do need to go to the clinic or hospital, you will need to put on a face mask. The staff might also have you wait some place away from other people.
If you are severely ill and need to go to the clinic or hospital right away, you should still call ahead. This way the staff can care for you while taking steps to protect others.
Will I need tests?
If you are suspected of having COVID-19, they will take samples of fluid from inside your nose and mouth and send them to a lab for testing. They might also test a sample of mucus that you cough up, as well as your urine and stool. These tests can show if you have COVID-19 or another infection. The doctor might also order a chest X-ray or computed tomography (CT) scan to check your lungs.
How is COVID-19 treated?
Most people with COVID-19 have only mild illness and can rest at home until they get better. People with mild symptoms seem to get better after about 2 weeks, but it's not the same for everyone. If you have COVID-19, it's important to stay home from school or work until your doctor or nurse tells you it's safe to go back.
If you have more severe illness, you might need to stay in the hospital, possibly in the intensive care unit (also called the "ICU"). While you are there, you will most likely be in a special "isolation" room. Only medical staff will be allowed in the room, and they will have to wear special gowns, gloves, masks, and eye protection. There is no specific treatment for COVID-19, but the doctors and nurses in the hospital can monitor and support your breathing and other body functions and make you as comfortable as possible.
You might need extra oxygen to help you breathe easily. If you are having a very hard time breathing, you might need to be put on a ventilator. This is a machine to help you breathe.
At CDA Acupuncture and Holistic Healing, we want you to know we care about you and want to be a resource for you during this challenging time. First of all, it is important for you to call us first if you feel you, or a family member, might be infected. We really want to limit exposing others to this virus so it is critical that you stay at home or go to a clinic/hospital which is set up to deal with exposures including testing. For those who may be dealing with the infection in their home, Dr. Toby would like you to set up a phone call so he can help advise you what your next steps should be. Please read through Dr. Toby’s blog entries on Covid-19 to learn more about the pandemic and what you can do to take care of you and your loved ones.
There are a number of things which can be done to support your immune system so that you can fight this infection. There is a lot we don’t know about this virus, but there are things we know we can do to help prevent the spread and contraction of the virus and things we understand about how the body works to fight infections and minimize the disease process. Naturopathic medicine believes in the vis medicatrix naturae – the healing power of the body. We can support the body, maximize the functionality of our immune systems and create a hostile environment for the virus to take hold. The conventional medical community does not have a treatment at this time. Naturopathically we don’t have a cure either, but there is science and research on the side of supporting the innate healing power of the body – a core principle of naturopathic medicine.
As the winter season takes grip of us here in the northern hemisphere with cold gray skies, darkness and diminished sunlight, many of us develop the “winter blues”. If you do, you're not alone. About 15% of the population may struggle with winter blues, a mild version of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Studies have shown that nearly 10% of people in New Hampshire have been diagnosed with SAD, but it affects only about 1% in Florida, the Sunshine State.
SAD is a form of depression that comes and goes depending on the time of year. There are 2 main types of the disorder. Fall-onset SAD – This type of SAD starts in late fall and goes away in the spring and summer. Some people call it "winter depression." It is the most common form of SAD. Spring-onset SAD – This type of SAD starts in the spring and goes away in the fall and winter. Spring-onset SAD is much less common than fall-onset SAD.
SAD tends to be more common in women, young adults and those who work night shifts. It also has been found to run in families. Common symptoms include:
There are a number of theories as to what causes SAD and winter blues. The reduced level of sunlight in fall and winter may affect circadian rhythms (our biological internal clock) leading to feelings of depression. The change in season ensuing effect on circadian rhythms may disrupt the balance of the body's level of melatonin, which plays a role in regulating sleep patterns and mood. Reduced sunlight can also cause a drop in serotonin, a brain chemical that affects mood, and might play a role in triggering depression. As sunshine decreases so does the body’s ability to make vitamin D. Drops in Vitamin D have also been linked to SAD.
Knowing these possible causes, there are some things you can do try to lift your mood during these cold dark months:
Having patients consume key vitamins and supplements have shown to be quite helpful in my practice. I often recommend checking vitamin D3 levels and supplementing to get levels up to 55-75 ng/mL. Most people need 2,000 IU to 5,000 IU daily. Be sure to take vitamin K2 with your vitamin D3 as this helps prevent toxicity from taking too much vitamin D3, but also is needed to push the calcium into your bones and prevent calcification of your soft tissue, like joints (arthritis) and heart (coronary artery disease). Melatonin at 3-6 mg before bed helps restore normal circadian rhythms. Supplementing with the amino acid 5-htp also helps raise serotonin levels and can be quite helpful with depression. Herbs like St. Johns Wort and Rhodiola are my favorites for lifting mood. Don’t forget taking fish oil – most people need 2000 mg or more of omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. Fish oil is essential for lifting depression.
It's normal to have some days when you feel down, but if it continues for multiple days at a time and you can't get motivated to do activities you normally enjoy it is important to see your health care provider. This is especially important if your sleep patterns and appetite have changed, you turn to alcohol for comfort or relaxation, or you feel hopeless or think about suicide.
This is one of the original “old school” hydrotherapy treatments made popular and used extensively by the forefathers of naturopathic medicine in the 19th century, including the famed Father Kneipp of Bad Woerishofen, Germany. This treatment, which is still currently prescribed by modern naturopathic physicians, involves putting on ice cold socks and... are you ready for this? ...Sleeping in them!
It may sound strange, but it works by rallying the body’s defenses. The body reacts to the cold socks by pulling stored blood from the inside (like the liver and spleen) and increasing white blood cells and other immune system functions to the peripheral circulation. In addition to helping strengthen the immune system, this hydrotherapy technique has been traditionally used for headaches, sore throat, ear infections, upper respiratory infections, neck pain, nasal congestion and sinus infections and to help gently lower fevers. It is best to use this technique at the first sign of illness and to use it three nights in a row if possible. Like with all new therapies, it is always a good idea to consult with your health care provider before starting the wet sock treatment. For more info, including a handout, please visit www.dr-toby.com/wet-socks
The theory of nature cure defines health as an adherence to the basic laws and energy patterns of Nature. Disease is viewed as a departure with Nature's laws. When the behavior of a human being, or of a community of human beings, diverges from these laws, the natural harmony of the world is disturbed. As a result, the vibrational state of the human body is similarly altered.
When one lives out of harmony with the laws of nature, one gets sick. Historically, the role of the doctor was to first recognize these imbalances then restore order and healing to both the individual patient and to the larger community.
As a classically trained acupuncturist and Naturopathic Doctor, I will be providing periodic health tips that recommend ways in which we can restore balance and allow for the healing power of nature to unfold.