Apart from damaging lungs, coronavirus also affects kidneys, liver, heart, brain and nervous system, skin and gastrointestinal tract, a medical team of Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York City said in a new report.
The medical team of the center in New York came up with the information in a review report published in the Nature Medicine journal.
Columbia University Irving Medical Center was flooded with patients that provided the medical team some real experiences. However, they collected reports from other medical teams around the world in this regard, they said.
The review by the doctors shows that the coronavirus attacks virtually every major system in the human body, directly damaging organs and causing the blood to clot, the heart to lose its healthy rhythm, the kidneys to shed blood and protein and the skin to erupt in rashes.
It also causes headaches, dizziness, muscle aches, stomach pain and other symptoms along with classic respiratory symptoms like coughing and fever.
Dr. Aakriti Gupta, a cardiology fellow at Columbia who worked on the review, in a statement, said, "Physicians need to think of COVID-19 as a multisystem disease."
"There's a lot of news about clotting but it's also important to understand that a substantial proportion of these patients suffer kidney, heart, and brain damage, and physicians need to treat those conditions along with the respiratory disease," she added.
According to the report, much of the damages wrought by the virus appear to come because of its affinity for a receptor — a kind of molecular doorway into cells — called ACE2.
Cells lining the blood vessels, in the kidneys, the liver ducts, the pancreas, in the intestinal tract and lining the respiratory tract all are covered with ACE2 receptors, which the virus can use to grapple and infect cells, the medical team said.
The medial team also wrote that "These findings suggest that multiple-organ injury may occur at least in part due to direct viral tissue damage."
The report also said the coronavirus infection also activates the immune system. Part of that response includes the production of inflammatory proteins called cytokines.
This inflammation can damage cells and organs and the so-called cytokine storm is one of the causes of severe symptoms, it said.
Dr. Mahesh Madhavan, another cardiology fellow, said, "This virus is unusual and it's hard not to take a step back and not be impressed by how many manifestations it has on the human body."
The researchers said blood clotting effects appear to be caused by several different mechanisms: direct damage of the cells lining the blood vessels and interference with the various clotting mechanisms in the blood itself.
Low blood oxygen caused by pneumonia can make the blood more likely to clot, they said adding that these clots can cause strokes and heart attacks or can lodge in the lungs or legs.
The researchers wrote that the virus affects the immune system, depleting the T-cells the body usually deploys to fight off viral infections. "Lymphopenia, a marker of impaired cellular immunity, is a cardinal laboratory finding reported in 67-90% of patients with COVID-19.”
Read Also: Extrapulmonary manifestations of COVID-19
Sleep disturbances, like having a hard time falling asleep or staying asleep, affect millions of people around the world.
The daytime sleepiness that follows can leave you feeling lousy and sap your productivity, and it may even harm your health.
Now, a small study suggests that mindfulness meditation — a mind-calming practice that focuses on breathing and awareness of the present moment — can help.
A study published a few years ago in JAMA Internal Medicine included 49 middle-aged and older adults who had trouble sleeping. Half completed a mindfulness awareness program that taught them meditation and other exercises designed to help them focus on “moment-by-moment experiences, thoughts, and emotions.” The other half completed a sleep education class that taught them ways to improve their sleep habits.
Both groups met six times, once a week for two hours. Compared with the people in the sleep education group, those in the mindfulness group had less insomnia, fatigue, and depression at the end of the six sessions.
The findings come as no surprise to Dr. Herbert Benson, director emeritus of the Harvard-affiliated Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine. “Mindfulness meditation is just one of a smorgasbord of techniques that evoke the relaxation response,” says Dr. Benson.
The relaxation response, a term he coined in the 1970s, is a deep physiological shift in the body that’s the opposite of the stress response. The relaxation response can help ease many stress-related ailments, including depression, pain, and high blood pressure. For many people, sleep disorders are closely tied to stress, says Dr. Benson.
Mindfulness meditation involves focusing on your breathing and then bringing your mind’s attention to the present without drifting into concerns about the past or future. It helps you break the train of your everyday thoughts to evoke the relaxation response, using whatever technique feels right to you.
Dr. Benson recommends practicing mindfulness during the day, ideally for 20 minutes, the same amount suggested in the new study. “The idea is to create a reflex to more easily bring forth a sense of relaxation,” he says. That way, it’s easier to evoke the relaxation response at night when you can’t sleep. In fact, the relaxation response is so, well, relaxing that your daytime practice should be done sitting up or moving (as in yoga or tai chi) so as to avoid nodding off.
Step 1: Choose a calming focus. Good examples are your breath, a sound (“Om”), a short prayer, a positive word (such as “relax” or “peace”), or a phrase (“breathing in calm, breathing out tension”; “I am relaxed”). If you choose a sound, repeat it aloud or silently as
you inhale or exhale.
Step 2: Let go and relax. Don’t worry about how you’re doing. When you notice your mind has wandered, simply take a deep breath or say to yourself “thinking, thinking” and gently return your attention to your chosen focus.
Due to the multifaceted consequences of the pandemic, numerous people are losing jobs or facing crisis in their career and family lives. As the educational institutes are closed, many students are getting addicted to technology, like virtual gaming on smartphones, which is disrupting their daily life activities and diet. All of these problems are causing depression and anxiety in people which is eventually leading to sleeplessness. Chronic sleep disorder or insomnia can make your body more vulnerable to the life-threatening COVID19 disease. Read this article to know how to sleep well during the pandemic.
Still today, the immunity system is your only weapon to fight against the attack of Coronavirus. Solid sleep at night can strengthen the natural immune system of your body; but how?
Research shows that sleep can foster T Cell production in the human body. T Cells are a kind of white blood cell that controls how your immune system is going to respond when any virus enters your body. Sleep deprivation can prevent 'T Cells' from responding efficiently which eventually makes it more difficult for the immune system of your body to kill the antigen virus and fight back against illnesses.
Furthermore, when you can successfully complete the four sleep cycles, your body can effectively produce and release a kind of essential protein substance called cytokine that can assist your immune system to respond against antigens quickly.
When you get good sleep, your mind can work better in doing complex thinking, learning, memorizing, and decision-making. For both kids and adults, regular sound sleep not only enhances mood, and prevents anxiety but also keeps the energy level high and helps them stay sharp.
Your internal circadian rhythm – which is also known as sleep/wake cycle or biological body clock – can naturally regulate the feelings of sleepiness and wakefulness throughout the day. If you can maintain a regular routine of bedtime and wakeup time for 7 days in every week, it can help your body clock work accordingly. Try not to break up the routine on weekends. Thus, you can have sound sleep every day amid pandemic.
Try to spend some time under bright sunlight during the morning. If you are locked down inside your home to prevent the virus contraction, then keep your windows opened to expose yourself to sunlight for at least the early hours of the day. This can improve your mood and help to regulate your circadian rhythms or body clock.
In addition to this, to have a better sleep at night, you need to limit the light exposure in the evening, especially from electronic devices, like a laptop, desktop, or Smartphone. It would be more effective if you can change the brightness of your device by activating “night mode” apps or features. This simple trick can reduce the lags of your brain preventing disturbances in your body clock. Thus, you can improve your sleep in the long term.
Due to the body clock (circadian rhythm), the adults may feel sleepy at day time at 2 or 3 pm and fall asleep at late night around 2 or 3 pm. To maintain a healthy sleep routine, you must avoid taking short naps during the afternoon or other periods in the day time.
However, if you have a very little sleep on the previous night, you can make an exception to break the routine. Regular daytime naps can reduce your body’s necessity of sleep can lead to insomnia.
As health experts are encouraging people to stay at home and maintain social distancing, the normal pace of life has been hampered. Many people are avoiding their respective regular outdoor physical activities – like walking, jogging, swimming, playing or going to the gym – and investing more time on screen for watching TV, Netflix, or checking social media, which is hampering their sleep time. If you can do some indoor physical exercise or Yoga every day, it would help you to build up enough body fatigue to fall asleep quite easily. Thus, you can enjoy better sleep.
Watching regular news to know how many people are getting affected or dying of COVID19 can enhance your worry. It can not only hamper your daily activities but also disturb your sleep on a regular basis. To avoid negative news you can limit your news exposure. If you are experiencing anxiety, do not hesitate to share your problems with family members, friends, or doctors.
You need to strengthen your bonding with family members to uplift your spirits and reduce anxiety. Besides this, you have to accept the fact that you may not have good sleep every night. Therefore, do not push yourself for sleep; rather try to manage your anxiety in a proper way.
A healthy diet can improve your quality of sleep. Try to avoid drinking tea or coffee during the evening or night hours, as the caffeine can stimulate your nerve and delay sleep in the night. However, if you cannot avoid caffeine after sunset, you can opt for organic teas – like Chamomile tea – which can naturally enhance the quality of your sleep. Furthermore, eating heavy meals before going to bed can also hamper your sleep.
The human brain works like a computer. Usually, the brain tends to relate to bed and darkness with falling asleep. This function of the brain can be disrupted if you engage with any activity like video games, physical activity, or surfing the internet before bedtime. To sleep like a baby, you need to avoid those devices at least 90 minutes before your scheduled sleep time. However, if you have an important office or business task, try to set them aside from a minimum of 30 minutes before going to bed.
However, if you cannot feel sleepy within 15 to 30 minutes after going to bed, try something soothing, like reading a book or listening to relaxing music until you fall asleep.
We all have that one friend or acquaintance who sleeps peacefully at night but keeps others awake the whole night with the sound of snoring.
Although snoring can be largely harmless, it can be a nuisance for others, especially your partner or the person you’re sharing the bed with.
But fortunately, there are some things that can be done to lessen the problem, if not solving it altogether.
You should start by making changes to your lifestyle and try some simple home remedies to alleviate the problem. There are some products that are marketed as ‘stop-snoring’ items. You can try them too.
But it is likely that you have sleep apnea if you snore and also wake up gasping for air or frequently feel sleepy or tired during the day. Sleep apnea can cause hypertension and more serious medical problems.
Please consult a doctor immediately if your snoring affects the quality of your sleep.
Lifestyle changes and home remedies
You should consider giving the following suggestions a shot to keep your airway open during sleep.
Quit smoking. Apart from numerous negative health effects, people who smoke are also more likely to snore. In fact, even secondhand smoke may increase your risk of snoring.
Avoiding alcohol is the best option but if you still choose to drink, consider not drinking alcohol within three hours of bedtime. This will help prevent your airway muscles from becoming slack when you sleep, reports Harvard Health Publishing.
Do not take medications that relax your muscles in the evening. Like alcohol, some drugs may relax muscles in the throat.
Try exercising to lose some weight if you are overweight or obese. Extra fat tissue in the neck and throat can narrow the airways. Losing weight could help open the airways for someone who is overweight or obese.
But this doesn’t necessarily mean that only obese people snore. Many people who are lean also snore.
You may also try home remedies for nasal obstruction issues. If your nose is stuffy due to mucus, try rinsing your sinuses with saline. If you have allergies, reduce dust mites and pet dander in your bedroom or use an allergy medication.
A humidifier or medication may reduce swelling of swollen nasal tissues.
Sleep on your side or elevate your head. Sleeping on your side may help because when you sleep flat on your back, your tongue falls back and presses against the top of your airway.
To help you stay on your side, try pressing a body pillow (a long, oversized pillow) against your back. You can try elevating your head by using an extra pillow or a wedge pillow.
The multidimensional effects of the COVID19 pandemic have affected the lives and livelihoods of numerous people. After the lockdown period, mass people are trying to return to their normal pace of life. Everyday people throng the roads to commute their respective workplaces. Traveling by a personal or rented vehicle like a car can be a safer option; as the public transports are rarely maintaining social distancing rules. Whether you use a car for you, family members, or rented passengers, you need to disinfect the vehicle properly. Read this article to know how to disinfect your car to prevent COVID19 contraction.
When you are commuting at your destination by car, pay your attention to virus preventive hygiene measures. Before you start the journey, it is essential to disinfect all the commonly touchable surfaces in your car. The disinfection process must be repeated after the end of your journey, especially when you share the car with other people like relatives, friends, colleagues, or rented passengers.
Parts of Car Interior You Should Disinfect
- Steering Wheel
- Steering Column Stalk
- Gear Stick
- Hand Brake
- Radio Controls
- Infotainment Controls
- Cruise Control
- Elbow Rests
- Seat position Controls
Parts of Car Exterior You Should Disinfect
- Door Handles
- Door Frame
- Luggage Compartment Handle
The disinfection process is mandatory for taxi drivers or CAB drivers who transport multiple passengers every day.
To disinfect the interior and exterior parts of your car, you can apply cleaning products that are already available at your home. You may already know that the alcohol solutions (at least 70 percent) are effective to kill the traces of coronavirus.
Usually, the carmakers and their subcontractors use isopropyl alcohol to clean the surfaces of the car. You can also apply this solution to disinfect the commonly touchable interior and exterior surfaces of your car. For added safety, you can wipe down the seat upholstery and other soft surfaces in the car using alcohol; but try not to soak those places.
However, if you are not an expert in automobile cleaning, never apply hydrogen peroxide, as it can damage the surface areas of your adorable car. You should also avoid applying ammonium contained cleaning products on the touch screens of your car.
For any cleaning method, try to use a foam brush or Microfiber cloth. And, carry out the cleaning process gently. Terribly rigorous cleaning with alcohol may discolor the materials and parts of your car.
If you are using the air condition system in your car, make sure you clean the vents properly using the heater duct cleaner. To disinfect the germs and viruses from the air condition unit, it would be ideal to apply any specialized spray for cleaning air condoning and ventilation systems of the car.
When you are traveling with other passengers, you put yourself at risk of coming into contact with a COVID19 infected person. Therefore, while you transport other persons in your car, wear a facemask. Moreover, you should not allow any passenger to enter your car without wearing a face mask. For precautions, you can carry some additional face masks inside the first aid kit of your car.
To portray the risk of coronavirus contraction while traveling by car, scientists have designed a simple model scenario: riding in the same car for about 72 minutes with a COVID19 infected passenger who has no visible symptoms except simple coughs.
To minimize the risk of coronavirus contraction in your car, you need to keep the windows open for 3-inches at least.
It would be better if you can avoid using the air condition system in your car during the current pandemic situation. If you still want to apply the air conditioning, make sure your car is not in ‘recirculation air mode’. Instead, opt for the mode that allows the inflow of fresh outdoor air. Keep the car-windows slightly open. Besides this, everyone in the car should wear a mask. These precautions must be followed in taxis, CABs, or ride-share vehicles.
When you take the car to a petrol filling station do not forget the virus precautions. Wear a facemask while contacting with the staff and try to keep the distance. If possible, choose a filling station where COVID19 preventive measures have been followed in a proper way. After paying your bills disinfect your hands immediately. It would be clever to keep your tank full so that you can avoid visiting the petrol station frequently.