A heartfelt letter from a Dubai based doctor to his tennis friends who have now become his patients with an anxiety disorder
He also talks about why the immunity building is not a short term process. And how compulsory vaccinations like BCG/ Polio/ DPT etc in India has already enhanced the immunity early in our lives
Tennis Blues. Patient Blues
By Dr. Vikram Mohindra, Aster Hospital’s ophthalmologist
The two most important people whom I have taken an oath to ‘We will treat them well’ are my patients and my tennis buddies who have now become patients with severe withdrawal symptoms, having not hit the ball for over a month. Their queries remain the same so I thought I must share with what I tell them.
My post to them –
- . IMMUNITY – Rome was not built in a day. The same is true for an individual’s immunity. Two factors are important – your genes which you cannot change and the environment factors after you were born. The latter is dependent on ‘Parenting ‘ factors when you were a child and thereafter it all-depends how you have used/abused your body. All the experts who are telling us that eat this / drink that to boost your immunity are telling us that ‘Rome was built in a day.’ It is like saying that an old run-down car ( Like my Ambassador Landmaster of 1956 vintage in PUNE bereft of usage and maintenance can become a TOYOTA Land cruiser overnight if I put synthetic engine oil/coolant etc). So eat sensibly to live and not live to eat . Follow the demand and supply curve to remain healthy.
- One more important thing about our immune system is that it has long term memory. No short term measures of diet can add to this memory. Hence if it has been exposed all along to infections of any kind, it releases antibodies IgG/ IgA/ IgM/ IgD/ IgE. So when re-exposed to any infection again later in life, it is in a heightened state of alert (Adaptive immunity ) and responds by releasing these antibodies ( may not be corona virus-specific ) which attacks the invader. The compulsory vaccinations ( BCG/ Polio/ DPT etc ) in India has already enhanced the immunity early in our life.
- Thereafter the system has been fortified by exposure to all too common viral fevers and viral diarrhea’ malaria, filaria Typhoid cholera, tuberculosis, and a host of infectious diseases in India. TABC inoculation is the most painful injection to date. This is one among many other reasons why India is not seeing the kind of mortality as in the west. So I tell my patients just RELAX / Stay positive / stay indoors / wear a mask /when outdoors stay 1.5 meters from all humans /- practice to stimulate your vagus nerve by any means Yoga / any exercise.
- A healthy mind bereft of anxiety has a healthy body simply because the endorphins released are immune modulators. Stay indoors and practice social distancing. The Queen of England has survived all pandemics starting from the Spanish flu because she hardly comes out. Wear a mask and plain glasses and keep your hands in your pocket and never touch your face or eyes
- HOW AND WHEN IS THIS GOING TO END?
Answer – Frankly nobody knows. Like all pandemics, the rate of infections will go down not because of medical interventions but because the human body is designed to flatten all infectious curves. We, Doctors, have nothing specific against the virus. Our role is supportive. Another rule which has been repeatedly proving again – More curves – fewer infections – male to female ratio as in all previous pandemics remains 3:1. So now you know who is the stronger sex. Learn to treat females well ( Felt bad reading reports about the rate of divorce cases filed has gone up )
- FINALITY will be reached a little later than in other Pandemics because it is NOT a normal virus. It will remain in the environment like influenza and keep attacking us off and on. The pharmaceutical companies are racing to get the formula for the corona vaccine correctly. Because whoever gets it first will be earning billions as it will be part of that immunization schedule for every person!
Tighten your seat belts and wait for the landing – After landing our lives will never be the same for a long time. We will have to recover mentally, physically, spiritually to be a winner. But rest assured normality will return to my dear tennis friends who have now become my patients with an anxiety disorder. We all cannot play for a long time because the tennis ball comes at a very high speed and on impact with the racquet/ground generates aerosols and can cause the virus to fly around. So relax we are still in the air and landing. Reaching home is still some time away. Till then relax and stay safe.
- To attend free mental health coaching group for COVID, click here
- How to maintain nutrition during the lock down? We asked an expert. Click here
- Click HERE to read about ways to take care of your eye health in the age of increased screen-time
- Click HERE to read lock-down diary of a personal trainer in Dubai
- How to maintain curly hair during the lock down. Click here