They may be suffering from:

  • ● Impaired lung functions
  • ● Acute muscle weakness and stiffness in the joints
  • ● Prolonged periods of fatigue
  • ● Decreased movement, agility and ability to do daily tasks
  • ● Delirium (disturbed state of mind characterized by confusion, restlessness and incoherence) and other cognitive impairments (memory loss)
  • ● Difficulty swallowing and communicating
  • ● Mental health disorders and psychosocial support needs

Physiotherapy can play an important role in the rehabilitation of people who have been severely ill with COVID-19 in a hospital or other setting. These people are at risk of encountering (severe) limitations in physical, emotional, cognitive and/or social functioning.

Physiotherapists and mental health professionals are crucial in early and ongoing rehabilitation for people recovering from severe COVID-19.

They can help with:

  • ● Early mobilisation and getting moving again
  • ● Simple exercises
  • ● Getting back to the activities of daily living
  • ● Lung recovery
  • ● Managing breathlessness
  • ● Coping with fatigue
  • ● Finding the balance between being active and taking rest
  • ● Mood instability and anxiousness due to hospitalization
  • ● Fears about the virus and being stigmatized due to hospitalization

It takes time to recover from a severe illness – a physiotherapist and a mental health professional will be able to guide you through the process and prioritise the goals that are important to you. They will work as part of multi-professional teams to support your needs.

A physiotherapist can help you with your ability to exercise, to incorporate physical activity and your return to daily life. A mental health professional can help you with unstable mood, anxiety and cognitive impairments due to COVID-19.