THE 100th patient to recover from COVID-19 in Jamaica is crediting a combination of steam facials and increased water intake for curing her and the rest of her family.
The 53-year-old woman, who Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton identified as 'Patient D' in his Covid Conversations social media forum, shared her remedy.
“Mr Tufton, you know how we go through this? We drink a lot of water and we steam our face, and let the steam go down. The water flush it out; that is how we get through,” the woman said spiritedly.
She added that she had been fearful that either she, or any of her five other infected household members, would not survive.
“We were scared. Every morning when I wake up I thank God that I wake up,” she said. “Every night when I'm going to sleep I say, 'God, [place] your hand on all of us.”
She disclosed that she contracted the virus from her daughter, who is an employee at the Portmore call centre that is at the epicentre of the St Catherine COVID-19 outbreak.
“Up here they feed you good... They feed [you] big people good. They talk to you, like sometimes if you don't have on your mask they tell you to put on your mask,” she recounted. “But here is not for babies, because they don't have what to give the babies. They gave them food, yes, but the snacks and so, they didn't get that.”
With COVID-19 now behind her, the domestic worker is trying to pick up the pieces. However, she lamented that it will be difficult because of the discrimination her family is facing.
“This is not an experience I would like to live again, and I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy... I have nothing, I have no work. I do domestic work and nobody wants me to come [to their homes],” she said.
The Jamaica Observer sought the medical advice of consultant physician Dr Samantha Nicholson-Spence on the efficacy of Patient D's remedy.
“It's always a good idea to consume plenty of water and fluids, especially when you are suffering from flu-like symptoms, such as those associated with COVID-19. Water helps to keep your nose and throat moist, and helps your body to rid itself of built-up mucous. Symptoms like diarrhoea and fever might cause you to become dehydrated, so water is recommended,” she said.
The doctor added: “Breathing in steam, such as that from a humidifier, is also good for moistening the nasal passage and easing discomfort caused by dry cough, postnasal drip, and nasal congestion. There is no proof that these remedies can cure you from the virus any faster, but they can definitely help you to feel better.”