The Cavalier Daily
Serving the University Community Since 1890

Top 10 ways to stay healthy throughout in-person classes

With the return to in-person classes, we want to make sure we are making active decisions to keep our minds and bodies healthy

<p>Madison Workman is a Top 10 writer for The Cavalier Daily.</p>

Madison Workman is a Top 10 writer for The Cavalier Daily.


10. Carry extra masks in your backpack 

Bringing a mask to class might be an extra thing to remember, and it is unfortunately the easiest to forget. While many spots on Grounds have extra masks, it is better to come prepared since you might not have time before class to go looking for one. Keeping a few extras in your backpack ensures that you can be on time for class while still following in-person instruction safety protocol and staying healthy.

9. Wash your hands with soap and water often 

Try your best to clean your hands throughout the day, especially after classes and before meals. To make sure you are effectively disinfecting your hands, try to sing “Happy Birthday” two times in your head while washing with warm water. Washing your hands with soap and water is the ideal way to remove germs, but if you aren’t able to have access to a sink, make sure you are carrying an extra bottle of hand sanitizer to effectively kill the germs on your hands while on the go.

8. Cover your mouth with a tissue when you must cough or sneeze

Whether it’s a cold or allergies, sometimes we all just have to sneeze or cough. Make sure to cover your mouth with a tissue when you do have to sneeze or cough to ensure that other people aren’t caught in the crossfire of your projected germs. Even though masks are required indoors, you are better safe than sorry — especially if your respective mask is not one that can effectively contain germs. It’s always a good idea to carry a pack of tissues with you, but if you do not have one accessible, make sure to cover your mouth by coughing or sneezing into your elbow.

7. Avoid close contact with other people 

During class, try to distance yourself from other students the best you can. Hopefully, most of your classes should be situated in a COVID-friendly way, but if you are ever feeling uncomfortable or constricted, make sure to reach out to your professor. Outside of class, be sure to make careful decisions regarding the social events you attend. While you may feel inclined or tempted to attend every social gathering, keep in mind that maintaining a consistent environment can benefit one’s health and decrease the chances of you contracting any unwanted germs.  

6. Stay home if you are feeling under the weather

If you wake up feeling even a little bit under the weather, it is best to let your professors know and stay home from class. Professors will be very understanding, as they would rather you get better and protect the health of other students than push yourself to attend class. If you are worried about falling behind, ask a classmate to fill you in on what you missed, or request a meeting with the instructor once you are feeling better. 

5. Disinfect objects and surfaces that are touched often 

It’s not always easy to remember to disinfect surfaces before you touch them. However, with many students coming in and out of classrooms, it is best to wipe down the desk before you sit down. Mini packs of disinfectant wipes can be bought all around Grounds and are not a hassle to carry in your backpack.

4. Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth 

While we all may have the inclination to itch our eyes, nose or mouth, try your best to avoid these temptations. Our hands pick up and carry around a disgusting number of germs, which is all the more reason to keep your hands away from your face. Be aware and make an active effort to keep your hands busy by holding a pencil or pen. If you must touch your face, do so with a tissue in order to avoid skin-to-skin contact. 

3. Take action to reduce potentially rising levels of stress 

As we start to feel the routine motions of the fall semester’s academic rigor, make sure you are still taking time for yourself. This might mean calling up a friend and asking them to lend a listening ear, or it might help to treat yourself to the latest episode of your favorite show. Whatever it is, recognize the difference between “guilty pleasure” and “self-care,” and acknowledge the healing benefits that come with taking care of yourself.

2. Stay hydrated 

In general, drinking plenty of water daily has many health benefits and significantly affects your energy level and brain functionality. Maintaining healthy hydration habits is a key weapon in fighting COVID-19. Even if you aren’t feeling thirsty, make an active effort to monitor your water intake, and take sips of water constantly throughout the day. Carrying a water bottle with you to class will help you remember to drink plenty of water. 

1. Get sufficient sleep every night 

It is very important that you are getting enough sleep every night in order to keep your body physically healthy and strong. Sleep significantly boosts your immune system and can aid you in fighting off the virus if you were to come in contact with it. To ensure a good night’s sleep, try to quiet your mind and unwind before going to bed by either reading a book, doing a breathing exercise or listening to music.