Health risks and potential remedies during prolonged lockdowns for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Diagnosis (Berl). 2020 May 26;7(2):85-90. doi: 10.1515/dx-2020-0041.


As coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues, an increasing number of countries and territories are adopting restrictive measures based on physical ("social") distancing, aimed at preventing human-to-human transmission and thereby limiting virus propagation. Nationwide lockdowns, encompassing mass quarantine under stay-at-home ordinances, have already been proven effective to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in some countries. Nevertheless, a prolonged homestay may also be associated with potential side effects, which may jeopardize people's health and thus must be recognized and mitigated in a way without violating local ordinances. Some of the most important undesirable consequences of prolonged homestay such as physical inactivity, weight gain, behavioral addiction disorders, insufficient sunlight exposure and social isolation will be critically addressed in this article, which also aims to provide some tentative recommendations for the alleviation of side effects.

Keywords: COVID-19; coronavirus; epidemics; health; outbreak.

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus*
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections* / complications
  • Coronavirus Infections* / epidemiology
  • Exercise
  • Humans
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / complications
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / epidemiology
  • Quarantine
  • Risk Factors
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Social Isolation
  • Weight Gain