COVID-19 crisis: How should stock medicine cabinet?

Sun Online Desk

28th April, 2020 01:22:11 printer

COVID-19 crisis: How should stock medicine cabinet?


Right now, there is no cure for the coronavirus.

Make sure, to start, that you have at least a 30-day supply of prescription medications if you take them, and check that you have a well-stocked first-aid kit, too.

To get a sense of what else you should, we talked to doctors and pharmacists across the country.

Here is the medicine and equipment that doctors recommend:

Medicine Cabinet or Hall Closet?

Even before you head to the pharmacy, make sure your medications and equipment can be stored safely.

“A medicine cabinet in a bathroom that gets steamy from a bath or shower isn’t an ideal place,” said Dr. Ilisa Bernstein, the senior vice president of pharmacy practice and government affairs at the American Pharmacists Association. “The humidity could impact the ingredients over time.”

Wherever you keep them, make sure the bottles are away from children.


Fever is one of the most prominent symptoms of the coronavirus.

If you have a thermometer in your house already, make sure you have extra batteries. Between uses, disinfect the thermometer with alcohol or peroxide.

If you are buying a thermometer, oral readers are the best, said Dr. Stacey Curtis, a clinical assistant professor at the University of Florida College of Pharmacy.

An ear thermometer needs to be placed properly for accuracy, and a forehead thermometer might not get a good reading if the patient is sweating, she said.

You will be cold and shivery, and will often sweat or be flushed. If you are exceptionally weak, dizzy or hallucinating, call your doctor. Consult with them before you go to the hospital.

Pulse Oximeters

Some patients develop a pneumonia that can cause oxygen levels to drop before they experience severe symptoms. A pulse oximeter is a hand-held, clip-like device that measures the oxygen level of your bloodstream. Some clip onto fingertips or earlobes. Normal readings usually range from 95% to 100%. A blood-oxygen level under 90 is considered low.

If you are struggling to draw a full breath, call your doctor and communicate concrete symptoms.

Fever Reducers and Painkillers

Both acetaminophen and ibuprofen will reduce a fever, and can be used to treat the uncomfortable symptoms of fever: headache, aches and chills.

Pharmacists caution against taking too much acetaminophen, which can cause severe liver damage. The total amount of acetaminophen taken in pain relievers and cold medications should not exceed 3,000 milligrams a day. Additionally, alcohol should not be consumed when taking acetaminophen.

Over-the-Counter Remedies

There are other things that might alleviate some symptoms. Throat lozenges will soothe an aching throat, which can come from coughing.

The coronavirus can lead to nausea or diarrhea. Although it can be uncomfortable, it might be best to let whatever gastrointestinal distress happen, because it is a way your body gets rid of infection.