Self-Care is Essential for Essential Workers During COVID-19

Self-Care is Essential for Essential Workers During COVID-19

Self-Care is Essential for Essential Workers During COVID-19

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If you’re an essential worker, it’s also essential to take good care of your health. So, while you’re keeping your company or community going, be extra careful to protect yourself.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, that means guarding both your mental and physical health.

On the physical side, the basics apply. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leaving site icon (CDC) says to protect yourself and others.

  • Keep up social distancing at work and anytime you are outside your home, such as staying 6 feet apart and avoiding crowds.
  • Wear a face cover over your mouth and nose.
  • Stay home when you’re sick.
  • Use hand sanitizer.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds often.
  • Don’t touch your mouth, nose and eyes until you’ve washed your hands.

If you must take public transit or ride sharing:

  • Look for ways to cut down close contact with others, such as standing six feet from others while waiting at the bus or train stop.
  • Avoid touching surfaces.
  • Shift your commute to less busy times, if possible.
  • Make sure you clean your hands as soon as you can.
  • Wear a face covering when social distancing is not possible.
  • Take hand sanitizer cloths with you and wipe any grips or other things you may need to touch.
At Work

Don’t touch things used by others, such as tools or keyboards. Make sure anything you touch is cleaned before you use it. Pay close attention so germs are not spread.

That means cleaning your hands:

  • Before and after work shifts
  • Before and after work breaks
  • After coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose (Learn more about coughing and sneezing leaving site icon the right way)
  • After using the restroom
  • Before eating
  • Before and after putting on, touching or lifting cloth face coverings
  • When you have to touch surfaces like a door knob, wash hands after or use hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol

You may want to shower and change into clean clothes as soon as you get home.

The CDC also has special tips by industry. leaving site icon

Sources: How to Protect Yourself and Others, leaving site icon CDC, 2020; Protect Yourself While Using Public Transportation, leaving site icon CDC, 2020;  Stress and Coping, leaving site icon CDC, 2020; Mental Health And COVID-19 Information and Resources, leaving site icon Mental Health America, 2020.