Health and Wellness (Under the Circumstances)

By Meg Walburn Viviano, CBM Editorial Director

Welcome to CBM Bay Weekly’s 2021 Health and Wellness issue. When this annual issue came out last (in early January 2020), the average American had never heard the words “coronavirus” and “COVID-19”, or if they had, it was an exotic disease affecting faraway lands. 

This January—in a pandemic—health and wellness go well beyond the usual goals of keeping up with routine appointmentsfostering healthy habits, and living your best life. Our priority now is just trying to keep from catching the virus, or unknowingly spreading it to others. 

Even so, it’s not the time to give up on those other goals. After all, strong mental and physical health are the best defense against the pandemic’s effects. 

It’s time to get back to those routine appointments that you may have put off during quarantine. Practices have gone to great lengths to be sure your dental appointments, vision care, and other check-ups are safe. At my recent teeth cleaning, the dental hygienist asked me to swish with peroxide before we began, which wasn’t unpleasant—just a bit sudsy. It made me wonder: if hydrogen peroxide can disinfect coronavirus, shouldn’t we continue this dental practice for good? Between the oralti rinse, the extensive PPE staff wore, and the air purifiers, I felt as safe as ever at the dentist’s office, and my teeth and gums are happy, too. 

When it comes to fostering healthy habits, the pandemic has brought a mixed bag. Vigilant hand-washing? Good! Nightly cocktails and lots of home-baked comfort food? Not as good. Walking or running outdoors because you’re stir-crazy and there’s not much else to do? Good! Feelings of hopelessness, stress and burnout caused by financial strain? Definitely not good. 

And that brings me to “living your best life.” Asked how they’re doing mentally, most people would say they are OK—under the circumstances. In this Health and Wellness issue, Bay Weekly wants to help you get back to feeling more than just OK. 

In our cover story (, we’re offering up resources to help you take care of yourself as well as some of your older loved ones.  

In a truly special story out of Calvert County  (, a group of ladies has been crafting comfort objects for dementia patients. The donations reflect love and compassion for the patients, but also offer the group of crafters a sense of purpose and companionship. That’s a wellness win-win. 

Another multitasking wellness move: grow some citrus fruit, then eat it for its benefits. Our Gardening for Health columnist explains both the growing part and a great recipe once your plant bears fruit. 

Yes, we are still in a pandemic, but we can take a fresh look at health and wellness. There is cause for optimism as front-lines workers and senior citizens receive begin to receive their vaccines. As the rest of us wait, let’s aspire to live our best lives (under the circumstances).