Recovering from Covid-19

Advice, exercises and guidance to support our patients recovering from Covid-19

It can take a long time to recover fully from coronavirus, many people report feeling unwell for several weeks, even months.

Below you will find information about how to improve your strength and balance if you have been off your feet and unwell for a while,  tips about improving your sleep and nutrition, and some helpful advice about how to manage fatigue, and managing breathlessness.

All of the advice has been put together by Public Health England and key health partners.

For help understanding how Covid-19 has affected you and what you might expect during your recovery please see the links below:

Support for Rehabilitation Self-Management after COVID-19- Related Illness (World Health Organisation)

Changing effects on your body

Swallowing Difficulties after Covid-19

The following information and advice about swallowing difficulties (dysphagia) may be useful while you wait for either a Speech and Language Therapy assessment, or whilst recovering from Covid-19.

 Swallowing is a process involving many structures, muscles and nerves.  After having Covid-19 you may have noticed your swallowing has changed. This may because:

  • Your swallowing muscles are generally weak
  • Your throat has been affected by breathing tubes and/ or ventilation
  • The co-ordination of your breathing and swallowing has been affected.

What problems might you have?

  • Food irritating or sticking in your throat. Your voice may sound wet or bubbly.
  • Coughing or choking on food or drink. This could happen straight away or a moment or two after you have swallowed
  • Feeling breathless during and/or after eating
  • Feeling that you can’t finish a meal

These are things you can do to help manage this at home:

  • Always sit up fully on a supportive chair when you are eating or drinking
  • Take small sips or bites
  • Eat or drink at a slower pace
  • Stop and rest if you are feeling breathless or tired
  • Eat little and often – three smaller meals and three snacks every day is recommended
  • Try eating softer foods which need to be chewed less
  • Limit speaking during meals as this can cause breathlessness
  • If swallowing tablets is difficult please ask your GP or pharmacist if they can be taken with small amounts of food e.g. yoghurt, custard or porridge on a teaspoon, taking one tablet at a time. Alternatively, ask your GP if they can be prescribed in a different form.

If you become concerned about any of the above symptoms then please discuss with your GP, Speech and Language Therapist or a member of the Post Covid Service.

NHS England - Supporting your recovery after Covid-19