Ayurveda’s immunity boosting measures for self care during COVID 19 crisis
In the wake of the Covid 19 outbreak, entire mankind across the globe is suffering. Enhancing the body’s natural defence system (immunity) plays an important role in maintaining optimum health. We all know that prevention is better than cure. While there is no medicine for COVID-19 as of now, it will be good to take preventive measures which boost our immunity in these times. Ayurveda, being the science of life, propagates the gifts of nature in maintaining healthy and happy living. Ayurveda’s extensive knowledge base on preventive care, derives from the concepts of “Dinacharya” - daily regimes and “Ritucharya” - seasonal regimes to maintain healthy life. It is a plant-based science. The simplicity of awareness about oneself and the harmony each individual can achieve by uplifting and maintaining his or her immunity is emphasized across Ayurveda’s classical scriptures. Ministry of AYUSH recommends the following self-care guidelines for preventive health measures and boosting immunity with special reference to respiratory health. These are supported by Ayurvedic literature and scientific publications. Recommended Measures I General Measures 1. Drink warm water throughout the day. 2. Daily practice of Yogasana, Pranayama and meditation for at least 30 minutes as advised by Ministry of AYUSH (#YOGAatHome #StayHome #StaySafe) 3. Spices like Haldi (Turmeric), Jeera (Cumin), Dhaniya (Coriander) and Lahsun (Garlic) are recommended in cooking. II Ayurvedic Immunity Promoting Measures 1. Take Chyavanprash 10gm (1tsf) in the morning. Diabetics should take sugar free Chyavanprash. 2. Drink herbal tea / decoction (Kadha) made from Tulsi (Basil), Dalchini (Cinnamon), Kalimirch (Black pepper), Shunthi (Dry Ginger) and Munakka (Raisin) - once or twice a day. Add jaggery (natural sugar) and / or fresh lemon juice to your taste, if needed. 3. Golden Milk- Half tea spoon Haldi (turmeric) powder in 150 ml hot milk - once or twice a day. III Simple Ayurvedic Procedures 1. Nasal application - Apply sesame oil / coconut oil or Ghee in both the nostrils (Pratimarsh Nasya) in morning and evening. 2. Oil pulling therapy- Take 1 table spoon sesame or coconut oil in mouth. Do not drink, Swish in the mouth for 2 to 3 minutes and spit it off followed by warm water rinse. This can be done once or twice a day. IV During dry cough / sore throat 1. Steam inhalation with fresh Pudina (Mint) leaves or Ajwain (Caraway seeds) can be practiced once in a day. 2. Lavang (Clove) powder mixed with natural sugar / honey can be taken 2-3 times a day in case of cough or throat irritation. 3. These measures generally treat normal dry cough and sore throat. However, it is best to consult doctors if these symptoms persist. 1 The above measures can be followed to the extent possible as per an individual’s convenience. 2 These measures are recommended by following eminent Vaidyas from across the Country as they may possibly boost an individual’s immunity against infections.
Novel Corornavirus Disease (COVID-19)
Guidelines on use of masks by public 1. Introduction A new disease named novel coronavirus (COVID-19) emerged in early December 2019 in China and has now spread to over 90 countries. As on 9 th March 2020, India has reported 42 cases mostly among those who had travelled from affected countries. It causes a minor illness in majority of patients with symptoms of fever and or cough. A small proportion of such persons may progress to severe disease with difficulty in breathing. It is spread by an infected person with COVID coughing and the droplets from his cough infecting others in close vicinity (less than 1 metre). Any such new disease invariably related to cough leads to suggestions from various quarters, especially in social media, to use mask by general public to prevent the disease. 2. Purpose of this document The purpose of this document is to give correct evidence based information to general public on use of mask. 3. Medical masks Medical masks of different size and shapes are available in the market. The common ones are flat pleated masks of woven fabric which covers the nose and mouth and affixed behind the head with straps/ elastic fasteners. There are also conical or duck bill shaped masks with valves (or without valves) that fit in the contour of face over the nose and mouth, but are costlier. 4. Use of masks by general public 4.1. Persons having no symptoms are not to use mask Medical masks should not be used by healthy persons who are not having any symptoms because it create a false sense of security that can lead to neglecting other essential measures such as washing of hands. Further, there is no scientific evidence to show health benefit of using masks for non-sick persons in the community. In fact erroneous use of masks or continuous use of a disposable mask for longer than 6 hours or repeated use of same mask may actually increase risk of getting an infection. It also incurs unnecessary cost. In such situation, more effective steps are: i. Wash hands frequently with soap and water for 40 seconds. An alcohol based hand sanitizer with 70% alcohol must be used for 20 seconds. If hands are dirty or soiled, do not use alcohol based hand sanitizer, but wash hands preferably with soap and water. ii. While coughing or sneezing cover nose and mouth with handkerchief, paper tissue. If handkerchief or tissue paper is not available cough into the flexed elbow. Dispose of tissue immediately after use and wash hands. iii. Refrain from touching face, mouth, nose and eyes. iv. Stay at least a metre away from those coughing or sneezing. v. Monitor your body temperature. 4.2. When and who should use medical masks (apart from health care worker). 4.2.1. When a person develops cough or fever. Use of medical three layer masks when ill, will prevent your infection from spreading to others. However you also need to wash your hands frequently to avoid spreading infection to others. 4.2.2. While visiting a healthcare facility. 4.2.3. When you are caring for an ill person. 4.2.4. Close family contacts of such suspect/confirmed cases undergoing home care should also use Triple layer medical mask. 4.3. Duration for which a medical mask will remain effective A medical mask, if properly worn, will be effective for 8 hours. If it gets wet in between, it needs to be changed immediately. 4.4. Correct procedure of wearing triple layer mask While wearing a medical mask, the steps given below needs to be followed. If you do not follow them, you may get infected from the mask itself. These steps are: яВ╖ Unfold the pleats; make sure that they are facing down. яВ╖ Place over nose, mouth and chin. яВ╖ Fit flexible nose piece (a metallic strip that can easily be located) over nosebridge. яВ╖ Secure with tie strings (upper string to be tied on top of head above the ears – lower string at the back of the neck.) яВ╖ Ensure there are no gaps on either side of the mask, adjust to fit. яВ╖ While in use, avoid touching the mask. яВ╖ Do not let the mask hanging from the neck. яВ╖ Change the mask after six hours or as soon as they become wet. яВ╖ Disposable masks are never to be reused and should be disposed off. яВ╖ While removing the mask great care must be taken not to touch the potentially contaminated outer surface of the mask яВ╖ To remove mask first untie the string below and then the string above and handle the mask using the upper strings. 4.5. Disposal of used masks Used mask should be considered as potentially infected. Masks used by patients / care givers/ close contacts during home care should be disinfected using ordinary bleach solution (5%) or sodium hypochlorite solution (1%) and then disposed of either by burning or deep burial.
Advisory on Social Distancing Measure in view of spread of COVID-19 disease
Social distancing is a non-pharmaceutical infection prevention and control intervention
implemented to avoid/decrease contact between those who are infected with a disease causing
pathogen and those who are not, so as to stop or slow down the rate and extent of disease
transmission in a community. This eventually leads to decrease in spread, morbidity and
mortality due to the disease.
In addition to the proposed interventions, the State/UT Governments may prescribe such other
measures as they consider necessary.
All these proposed interventions shall be in force till 31st of March, 2020. They will be reviewed
as per the evolving situation.
The following interventions are proposed:
1. Closure of all educational establishments (schools, universities etc), gyms, museums,
cultural and social centres, swimming pools and theatres. Students should be advised
to stay at home. Online education to be promoted.
2. Possibility of postponing exams may be explored. Ongoing exams to be conducted only
after ensuring physical distance of one meter amongst students.
3. Encourage private sector organizations/employers to allow employees to work from
home wherever feasible.
4. Meetings, as far as feasible, shall be done through video conferences. Minimize or
reschedule meetings involving large number of people unless necessary.
5. Restaurants to ensure handwashing protocol and proper cleanliness of frequently
touched surfaces. Ensure physical distancing (minimum 1metre) between tables;
encourage open air seating where practical with adequate distancing.
6. Keep already planned weddings to a limited gathering, postpone all non-essential social
and cultural gatherings.
7. Local authorities to have a dialogue with organizers of sporting events and competitions
involving large gatherings and they may be advised to postpone such events.
8. Local authorities to have a dialogue with opinion leaders and religious leaders to
regulate mass gatherings and should ensure no overcrowding/at least one metre distance
9. Local authorities to have meeting with traders associations and other stakeholders to
regulate hours, exhibit Do’s and Don’ts and take up a communication drive in market
places like sabzi mandi, anaj mandi, bus depots, railway stations, post-offices etc.,
where essential services are provided.
10. All commercial activities must keep a distance of one meter between customers.
Measures to reduce peak hour crowding in markets.
11. Non-essential travel should be avoided. Buses, Trains and aeroplanes to maximize
social distancing in public transport besides ensuring regular and proper disinfection of
12. Hospitals to follow necessary protocol related with COVID-19 management as
prescribed and restrict family/friends/children visiting patients in hospitals.
13. Hygiene and physical distancing has to be maintained. Shaking hands and hugging as
a matter of greeting to be avoided.
14. Special protective measures for delivery men/ women working in online ordering
15. Keep communities informed consistently and constantly
Preventive measures to be taken to contain the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)
In order to contain the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), some
precautionary measures are required to be taken by all the employees and the
Ministries/Departments. In this regard, it has been decided to issue the
following advisory for the well-being of Government employees and in public
2. All the Ministries/Departments are advised to take all necessary
measures such as :-
(i) Install thermal scanners at the entry of Government buildings,
as feasible. Mandatory placing of hand sanitizers at the entry of
Government buildings. Those found having flu-like symptoms
may be advised to take proper treatment/quarantine etc.
(ii) Discourage, to the maximum extent, entry of visitors in the office
complex. Routine issue of visitors/temporary passes should be
suspended with immediate effect. Only those visitors whom
have proper permission of the officer who they want to meet,
should be allowed after being properly screened.
(iii) Meetings, as far as feasible, should be done through video
conferencing. To minimize or reschedule meetings involving
large number of people unless necessary.
(iy) Avoid non-essential official travel.
(v) Undertake essential correspondence on official email and avoid
sending files and documents to other offices, to the extent
(vi) Facilitate delivery and receipt of dak at the entry point itself of
the office building, as far as practicable.
(vii) Close all gyms/recreation centres/creches located in
(viii) Ensure proper cleaning and frequent sanitization of the workplace, particularly of the frequently touched surfaces.
(ix) Ensure regular supply of hand sanitisers, soap and running
water in the washrooms.
(x) All officials may be advised to take care of their own health and
look out for respiratory symptoms/fever and, if feeling unwell,
should leave the workplace immediately after informing their
reporting officers. They should observe home-quarantine as
per the guidelines issued by MoH&FW .
(xi) The leave sanctioning authorities are advised to sanction leave
whenever any request is made for self-quarantine as a
(xii) Advise all employees who are at higher risk i.e. older
employees, pregnant employees and employees who have
underlying medical conditions, to take extra precautions. The
Ministries/Departments may take care not to expose such
employees to any front-line work requiring direct contact with
3. An indicative list of Do's and Don'ts is also annexed for wide
Covid 19 Guidelines for home quarantine
Detection of a travel related/unrelated suspect case of novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID19) will be followed by rapid isolation of such cases in designated health facilities and line
listing of all contacts of such cases.Home quarantine is applicable to all such contacts of a
suspect or confirmed case of COVID-19.
This intervention will be limited to the initial phase of India reporting only (i) travel related
cases and (ii) focal clusters arising from a travel related/unrelated case where cluster
containment strategy is adopted (iii) Persons coming from COVID-19 affected areas where
local and community transmission is evident.
Definition of contact
A contact is defined as ahealthyperson that has been in such association with aninfected
person or a contaminated environment as to have exposed and is therefore at a higher risk of
A contact in the context of COVID-19 is:
• A person living in the same household as a COVID-19 case;
• A person having had direct physical contact with a COVID-19 case or his/her
infectious secretions without recommended personal protective equipment (PPE) or
with a possible breach of PPE
• A person who was in a closed environment or had face to face contact with a
COVID-19 case at a distance of within1metre including air travel;
The epidemiological link may have occurred within a 14тАРday period before the onset of
illness in the case under consideration.
Instructions for contacts being home quarantined
The home quarantined person should:
Stay in a well-ventilated single-room preferably with an attached/separate toilet. If another
family member needs to stay in the same room, it’s advisable to maintain a distance of at
least 1 meter between the two.
• Needs to stay away from elderly people, pregnant women, children and persons with
co-morbidities within the household.
• Restrict his/her movement within the house.
• Under no circumstances attend any social/religious gathering e.g. wedding,
He should also follow the under mentioned public health measures at all times: -
• Wash hand as often thoroughly with soap and water or with alcohol-based hand
• Avoid sharing household items e.g. dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils,
towels, bedding, or other items with other people at home.
• Wear a surgical mask at all the time. The mask should be changed every 6-8 hours
and disposedoff.Disposable masks are never to be reused.
• Masks used by patients / care givers/ close contacts during home care should be
disinfected using ordinary bleach solution (5%) or sodium hypochlorite solution (1%)
and then disposed of either by burning or deep burial.
• Used mask should be considered as potentially infected.
• If symptoms appear (cough/fever/difficulty in breathing), he/she should immediately
inform the nearest health centre or call 011-23978046.
Instructions for the family members of persons being home quarantined
• Only an assigned family member should be tasked with taking care of the such
• Avoid shaking the soiled linen or direct contact with skin
• Use disposable gloves when cleaning the surfaces or handling soiled linen
• Wash hands after removing gloves
• Visitors should not be allowed
• In case the person being quarantined becomes symptomatic, all his close contacts
will be home quarantined (for 14 days) and followed up for an additional 14days
or till the report of such case turns out negative on lab testing
a) Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces in the quarantined person’s room (e.g.
bed frames, tables etc.) daily with 1%Sodium Hypochlorite Solution.
b) Clean and disinfect toilet surfaces daily with regular household bleach solution/phenolic
c) Clean the clothes and other linen used by the person separately using common household
detergent and dry.
Duration of home quarantine :-
a) The home quarantine period is for 14 days from contact with a confirmed case or earlier if
a suspect case (of whom the index person is a contact) turns out negative on laboratory
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