The Covid Complication  – some tips and useful links

for a downloadable copy of this resource, click here

by Tricia Hendry

The COVID-19 pandemic has given family, whānau and aiga carers an extra obstacle to navigate around! There is a lot you can’t control, so focus on what you can.

  1. Do what you can to reduce transmission of the coronavirus. Pay attention to hygiene, face coverings, arranging vaccinations, staying safe at home, and being wise if you need to go out.
  2. Stay informed but don’t overdo it. Too much news can be stressful. Limit your intake each day. Only use trustworthy information. Avoid misinformation that does harm and increases fear. Use https://covid19.govt.nz/
  3. Support is available, so make the most of it
    • Register with wecare.kiwi  – set up by a network of charities including Carers NZ and IHC to provide check-ins, reassurance, day to day advice, or help to deal with practical concerns during this pandemic. Visit https://wecare.kiwi/
    • For health support, contact your GP without hesitation
    • For a COVID-19 query call Healthline, 0800 358 5453
    • If your mental health is suffering, use the 1737 helpline (24/7) for support or contact your doctor
  1. Make self-care your highest priority. To cope and continue your family/whānau caring role, take things slowly – pace yourself. Eat healthy food, drink water regularly, take breaks, get enough sleep, exercise when you can, use some positive self-talk, and take any help that’s offered. Keep a simple routine going.
  2. Take moments to relax and unwind. Use music, stretch, breathe deeply, enjoy a snack, read, do a hobby or something creative, bake or cook for fun, call a friend, watch a comedy, walk, sit outside, meditate, pray, reflect, write down your thoughts – or just nap!   
  3. Keep connected. Keep up positive relationships with those you live with, as best you can. Keep your sense of humour. Find ways to help each other. Check in with friends, family, whānau, friends, and neighbours. Phone, email, message, share some Facetime or Zoom together – or wave over the fence! 

This challenging time will pass. Remember, unwanted recent COVID-19 changes in how support is provided are temporary. Take things step by step, and day by day. Be very kind to yourself. You’re doing the best you can in an unpredictable situation. Well done.

If you are under severe stress, this article may be helpful. Or download our free Carers NZ resource on carer burnout, We Are Not Machines.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash