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A toolkit for living well as we emerge from the pandemic

  • Society

RCSI MyHealth aims to demystify common health concerns by drawing expertise and insight from our team of researchers and international health experts at the cutting-edge of medical and healthcare developments.

‘Learning to live well as we emerge from the pandemic’ is a core theme of the latest series, with our experts exploring how the six pillars of lifestyle medicine can be used to empower people to maximise their own health and well-being.

Chaired by Prof. Ciaran O’Boyle, Director of RCSI Centre for Positive Psychology and Health, the first lecture looks at how the three pillars of physical activity and exercise, healthy relationships and sleep can help to improve physical and emotional health in the context of coping with the pandemic.

Moving more

Dr Helen French, Chartered Physiotherapist and Senior Lecturer at the RCSI School of Physiotherapy, explains why physical activity and exercise is so important at this time. She outlines how people may have become more sedentary working from home during the pandemic and emphasises the need to reduce sitting time and to increase activity. Dr French recommends that physical activity should become a routine in people’s lives and encourages people recovering from COVID-19 in particular to remember the ‘3 Ps’ when trying to increase physical activity: pacing, prioritising and planning.

Human connection

Dr Trudy Meehan, Senior Clinical Psychologist specialising in child and adolescent mental health and lecturer at the RCSI Centre for Positive Psychology and Health, outlines the importance of relationships to health and well-being and offers some advice on how to address the loss of connection that many people experienced during the pandemic. Dr Meehan discusses evidence that demonstrates how human beings are programmed to have connections with others and the relationship between positive connections and stress reduction.

Forty winks

During the pandemic 40% of people reported sleep problems due to anxiety, changes to routine or COVID related illness. Dr Annie Curtis, Senior Lecturer in the RCSI School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences and researcher specialising in the area of the body clock and immunology, discusses the body clock and the benefit of sleep on health and well-being. She encourages people to give sleep as much a priority in their lives as physical exercise and diet and to implement small behavioural modifications to improve sleep.

RCSI MyHealth is part of RCSI’s commitment to good health and well-being. Ranked second in the world for its contribution to UN Sustainable Development Goal 3 in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2021, RCSI is exclusively focused on education and research to drive improvements in human health worldwide.

View past RCSI MyHealth lectures here.

RCSI is committed to achieving a better and more sustainable future through the UN Sustainable Development Goals.