Self-Care for COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
Taking Care of Yourself When You Have COVID-19
If you are diagnosed with coronavirus or think you might have it, here’s how to care for yourself and family members.
Stay Home Until
- You have not had a fever for at least 24 hours (that’s one full day of no fever without taking any fever reducing medicine)
- Other symptoms, such as cough or shortness of breath, have improved
- The CDC advises that those with COVID-19 should isolate for five days, although some experts recommend 10 days for maximum precaution. You should only stop isolating after five days if you haven’t had a fever for at least 24 hours without fever-reducing medications and your symptoms are improving or absent. Note that you should also wear a well-fitting mask through day 10 when around others.
While at Home
- Monitor your symptoms and stay in touch with your doctor if you feel worse.
- Call before you go to any health care setting.
Stay Away from Others
- At home, stay away from family members and pets.
- Wear a facemask if you have to be around others to protect them from your cough and sneeze droplets.
- Do not share dishes, drinking glasses or cups, eating utensils, towels or other bedding with people in your home. Wash these items thoroughly after each use.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces including sinks, microwave, refrigerator, toilets, shower, bath, etc., after you use them.
- Wear a facemask and gloves if you need to be around family members and pets.
Take Care of Yourself
- Get plenty of rest.
- Drink lots of fluids.
- Keep warm.
- Use a humidifier or take a hot shower for sore throat and cough.
- Take acetaminophen, ibuprofen or naproxen to reduce fever and relieve aches and pains.
- Eat healthy foods.
- Clean your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after you blow your nose, cough, sneeze, use the bathroom, and before eating or preparing food.
- Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
This information has been reviewed and approved by Lisa Maier, MD; Jared Eddy, MD; and Rosine Angbanzan, MPH (February 2022)