COVID-19 shopping list: Canned foods, toilet paper, contraceptives

COVID-19 shopping list: Canned foods, toilet paper, contraceptives

Contributed by Dianne Thomas, director - communications and public relations, National Family Planning Board

Monday, April 06, 2020

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THE subject of the latest virus, COVID-19, has dominated our collective thoughts and conversations. While many welcome the time off from work and the opportunity to tackle the office assignments from the comfort of home, others are bored as hell. Let's face it, it's not as though we got advanced notice to prepare ourselves sufficiently.

But even as the work from home order seems idyllic, there are drawbacks. Schools are out so the children are also working from home and you have to play teacher. Other adults may have been among those ordered to stay home, so that means more activity around you. If you stop to think of it, many are lamenting that they have already busted their budgets and have very little savings from their last paycheque. If there was no other month that loan companies were receiving requests for salary advances, March was the month! What with purchase of extra food, toilet tissue and sanitisers being elevated to the top three on the shopping list, we have been spending what we don't have.

Many of us got caught up in panic buying. But in your panicking did you remember to stock up on that one item that can impact your life forever, your contraceptives? In the harried preparations for a quarantine or worse for a lock down, contraceptives need to figure high on the list of 'must-haves'. In reality, we have no idea how long we'll have to be living this new way of life, so we must ensure that we have our preferred method. The variety extends from short-term (pills, condoms, injectables) to longer-term methods including the intrauterine contraceptive device, the implant, vasectomy and tubal ligation.

Luckily, health clinics operated by the Government are still open to the public and the contraceptives are accessible. Clinicians will take the time to help those who are deciding on a method and find the right one that suits their lifestyle.

It is a fact that in times of disasters there is increased activity as people are confined to their homes or have very little freedom to move around. With the confinement comes increased engagement in sex. Why? Among other things, sex relaxes partners, brings you closer to your partner, helps people pass the time, and increases self-confidence. However, many liaisons of this type end in an unwanted or an unplanned pregnancy.

Now where is that shopping list?


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