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Stocking your medicine cabinet during COVID-19

Healthsource WJRT
Healthsource WJRT(WJRT)
Published: Sep. 17, 2020 at 8:55 AM EDT
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The COVID shutdown left many Americans scrambling to get their much-needed medications, medical devices, and equipment. So, what should you stock up on during this crisis?

Your medicine cabinet might be full, but is it full of the right stuff? Experts say there are some meds and devices that you should have … especially during the coronavirus pandemic. The first: a thermometer. It’s the tried-and-true way to check for a fever, which is a common symptom of Covid-19. Make sure you have extra batteries for it. Have ibuprofen or acetaminophen on hand to help reduce a fever and relieve pain. Also, you may want to purchase a pulse oximeter which measures oxygen levels in your blood.

“Monitoring oxygen is important in the high-risk populations and in anybody who we know has COVID,” shares Richard Levitan, MD, an emergency physician.

It may detect early signs of pneumonia, which is particularly important in COVID cases.

“If we can detect the pneumonia earlier, then many, many more patients can avoid ventilators,” continued Dr. Levitan.

COVID can also give you a sore throat, so keep lozenges in your cabinet. The virus also causes nausea and diarrhea in some, but experts don’t recommend taking any medicines for these symptoms, but an electrolyte replenisher like Pedialyte might help reduce the risk of dehydration. Also, it’s a good idea to keep a first-aid kit around in case of minor injuries. Helping you stock your medicine cabinet during COVID.

Experts say you should also have at least a 30-day supply of prescription medicines, if you take any. You can buy a pulse oximeter for 30 to 60 dollars at most pharmacies or via online retailers.

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