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COVID-19 or coronavirus

There is a lot of information about COVID-19, which is also known as coronavirus, in the news. If you are feeling anxious or overwhelmed, find out what it is and what to do if you’re worried.

More information about coronavirus

What is coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new type of virus that’s affecting people across the world. It can affect your lungs and airways, but it seems like it has less effect on children and young people.[1]

Symptoms of coronavirus

The symptoms are usually:

  • a high temperature - this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)

  • a persistent cough you haven’t had before - this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)

Do not go to your doctor, chemist or hospital.

Use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do.

Most people who have coronavirus will recover fully without ever needing to see their doctor, and experts in the UK and across the world are working to keep everyone safe.

What you can do

  • Stay at home to stop coronavirus spreading. Everyone must stay at home to help stop the spread of coronavirus. You should only leave the house for 1 of 4 reasons.

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze, and wash your hands as soon as you can afterwards.

  • Bin any tissues you sneeze or cough into straight away.

  • Talk to an adult you trust if you have questions.

You can find out more about how to stop the spread of coronavirus and how you can look after your health and wellbeing on the NHS website.  

Given the current circumstances and restrictions coronavirus has placed upon us, why not follow the five ways to wellbeing at home and encourage your family and friends to do the same?

Connect - It is important to stay connected to friends and family whilst the ‘physical’ social distancing is recommended; to tackle this we can use social media, facetime, text, group chats, WhatsApp etc.

Be active - Make some exercises up around the home, play games, do some gardening, bake, cook, interact as a family together and have fun.

Take notice - Take notice of your feelings and thoughts and practice some mindfulness strategies at home to help you manage and relax – see resources on our Resilience and Mindfulness webpage for help on this.

Learn - Stimulate the mind, create opportunities to learn new things, read a book, learn how to sew, stich, a new game, access online learning resources, complete schoolwork, revision and workbooks.

Give - Give yourself personal space and time to look after yourself – ensure you eat a healthy diet, exercise, stick to some routine and sleep well. Give your patience, time, smile and be kind.

Self-help materials

If you’re still feeling anxious, you can find a number of recommended apps, useful videos, games, books and resources as well as links to more support around anxiety available of our Anxiety or Stress webpage that are designed to help you.

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