5 Habits You Should Stick With Post-Pandemic

by Kroger Health Staff

Last Updated: April 27, 2020

We know the COVID-19 crisis will eventually end, and the economy will rebound. But when it does, America will change, as it has after every crisis our nation has faced. But not all of the changes will be bad in our post-pandemic world. We’ve adopted some good habits that we should keep around long after we’ve conquered COVID-19.
  1. Wash your hands more often.
    A University of Southern California survey reports that COVID-19 has impacted most people’s behavior positively. In the survey, 85 percent of people reported washing their hands or using sanitizer more often than before. Handwashing or sanitizing is important for infection control, but your skin is also the largest organ of your body and requires proper care. Both washing and sanitizing remove protective oils from your hands, meaning that they can become dry and cracked. Use soaps without fragrance, and always wash in comfortably warm water. Then, pat dry (don’t rub or wipe). If dryness becomes an issue, fragrance-free hand creams may be your best solution.
  2. Avoid touching your face.
    You’ve most likely heard the advice to stop touching your face to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. When you touch your face, your fingers transfer germs closer to your eyes, nose, and mouth, which makes you more likely to get sick. By breaking the habit now, you could prevent future infections from other highly contagious bacteria and viruses such as strep and influenza.
  3. Wave goodbye to handshakes.
    The Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci recently said, “I don’t think we should ever shake hands again, to be honest with you.” The greeting has been ingrained in human history for centuries and is a standard method to make a positive first impression and establish trust and cooperation. It stretches the globe and transcends business, politics, and society. But the go-to-greeting has suddenly become a bioweapon in the age of COVID-19, and many experts believe it is time to wave goodbye to the handshake. So, what will replace it? Many are trying fist bumps and elbow bumps, and in Japan, the custom is to bow.
  4. Wear a facemask when you are sick.
    In many Asian countries, it is common to wear a facemask in public when you are feeling ill. Not only does it help keep those around you from getting sick and helps prevent the spread of infection, but it also discourages the wearer from touching his or her face. Wearing a mask during the current pandemic has made many Americans more accustomed to wearing and seeing masks in public, so if the trend continues, it could help prevent the spread of other respiratory diseases such as influenza. Wearing facemasks for a prolonged period of time can irritate the skin on the bridge of your nose and behind the ears. A good moisturizer can help with that, too, after washing the area. For more information on why The Centers for Disease Control’s recommends wearing masks, click here.
  5. Home cooking makes a comeback.
    As we all find ourselves stuck at home during the COVID-19 crisis, we are all cooking more of our own meals. One survey found that 54% of Americans are cooking more than before the pandemic, and 73% are enjoying it more than before. Cooking our meals means we are making healthier choices about what is put into our bodies and lessening our reliance on takeout and unhealthy pre-packaged foods. Also, another study found people who cook dinner at home consume fewer calories than those who don’t cook or cook less often.

Disclaimer: The information in this story is accurate as of its publication. However, the situation surrounding COVID-19 is ever-evolving. We are working to keep our stories up-to-date as changes occur, but we also encourage everyone to check news and recommendations from the CDC, WHO, and their local authorities.