Written by Dr. Valentina Quintana MD on
June 15, 2022
Reading Time: 7 minutes

Medically Reviewed by our Medical Affairs Team

Written by Dr. Valentina Quintana MD on:

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Covid-19 has everyone on edge. The pandemic has caused a great deal of anxiety and stress, which can lead to brain fog.

If you are one of the many people who are experiencing brain fog after being exposed to Covid 19, don’t worry—you are not alone. There are many things that you can do to recover from this condition.

In this article, we will discuss some of the best Covid brain fog recovery strategies that you can try at home or with a specialist.

Let’s get started.

What exactly is Covid brain fog?

Covid 19 brain fog or mental fog is a condition that can be caused by anxiety, stress, or lack of sleep. It can also be brought on by the virus itself even after the initial infection.

Research also shows that Covid-19 can cause neurological problems, which can lead to cognitive difficulties.

This cognitive impairment can manifest itself in many different ways. Some people may have difficulty concentrating, while others may struggle with memory, decision-making, and slow thinking. 

Covid 19 brain fog can also cause fatigue, irritability, and mood swings. If you are struggling with any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek help from a professional. 

Covid brain fog often lasts for weeks or even months after the initial infection. However, there are things that you can do to help your brain recover.

Covid Brain Fog Recovery Strategies

There are many things that you can do to recover from cognitive difficulties. Here are some of the best Covid 19 brain fog recovery strategies:

1) See your doctor first

If you are experiencing any of the lingering symptoms of long Covid 19, such as cognitive impairments and fatigue, it’s important to see your doctor first. 

Your doctor can rule out any other potential causes of your symptoms and help you create a treatment plan

Other potential causes might include:

  • Sleep disorders
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Vitamin deficiencies
  • Chronic illnesses

2) Sleep well 

One of the best things that you can do for your brain and immune system is to get enough sleep. When you are well-rested, your brain has a chance to recover and repair itself.

So, aim for at least seven to eight hours of good quality sleep each night.

To get the most out of your sleep, make sure to establish a regular sleep schedule and stick to it as much as possible.  

If you’re still having problems falling asleep or staying asleep, we recommend you do the following:

  • avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed
  • exercise regularly
  • establish a bedtime routine
  • create a relaxing sleep environment 
  • refrain from using devices on your bed
  • avoid digital screens 30 minutes before bedtime.

You can also try taking supplements such as melatonin to help you sleep better.

If none of our recommended steps work, you might have a sleep disorder, so make sure to see a specialist so that you can get treated for your sleep problems.

3) Perform aerobic exercise

Exercise is not only good for your body, but it’s also excellent for your brain. When you exercise, your brain releases chemicals that can help improve your mood, memory, and focus.

So, if you are struggling with brain fog after Covid 19, we recommend that you start working out regularly.

Aerobic exercise is particularly beneficial in aiding mild cognitive impairment because it can help increase blood flow to your brain. This, in turn, can help improve cognitive function.

Some great aerobic exercises that you can try include:

  • running
  • walking
  • swimming
  • cycling

You should aim to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week. If you can’t commit to this, start with smaller goals and gradually work your way up.

It’s also important to find an exercise that you enjoy so that you are more likely to stick with it in the long run.

If you need some motivation to get started, we recommend joining a local sports team or signing up for a class at your gym.

Alternatively, you can also exercise with a friend or family member to make it more fun. Whatever you do, make sure to start moving and get your heart rate up!

4) Take plenty of rest throughout the day

In addition to getting enough sleep at night, it’s also important to take plenty of rest during the day. This means taking breaks often and not pushing yourself too hard.

If you are feeling tired, make sure to take a nap or just relax for a few minutes. It’s also important to listen to your body and know when it’s time to call it a day.

Don’t try to push yourself beyond your limits, as this will only make your mental fog worse.

Whenever possible, we recommend you take a few minutes to just sit down and relax. You can close your eyes, take some deep breaths, and clear your mind of any racing thoughts. 

You can also try some relaxation techniques such as yoga or meditation. These activities can help you focus and feel more relaxed.

Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to rest and recover, both mentally and physically.

5) Eat Mediterranean-style meals

What you eat can also affect your Covid 19 brain fog and other cognitive symptoms. So, if you want to improve your brain function, we recommend eating a healthy diet.

One type of diet that has been shown to be beneficial for brain health is the Mediterranean diet. This diet focuses on eating fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish, and olive oil. 

Studies have shown that the Mediterranean diet can help improve cognitive function and protect against dementia.

So, if you are looking for ways to improve your brain health, we recommend trying out this type of diet.

You can start by adding more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to your meals. You should also aim to eat fish at least twice a week.

And don’t forget to use olive oil as your main source of fat. This healthy fat can help improve your cognitive function and protect your brain against damage.

If you need some inspiration, there are plenty of Mediterranean-style recipes online that you can try.

6) Consider supplementing with vitamins and other important minerals

In addition to eating a healthy diet, you may also want to consider supplementing with vitamins and other important minerals. This is especially true if you are not getting enough of these nutrients from your diet.

Some essential nutrients for brain health include:

  • omega-three fatty acids
  • vitamin B12
  • iron
  • magnesium

Omega-three fatty acids are particularly important for brain health as they can help protect your brain against damage.

They can also improve cognitive function and reduce inflammation. If you don’t eat fish, we recommend taking an omega-3 supplement.

Vitamin B12 is another essential nutrient for brain health. This vitamin is involved in the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that is important for mood and sleep.

If you are not getting enough vitamin B12 from your diet, we recommend taking a supplement.

Iron is another important nutrient for brain health as it is involved in the production of dopamine. This neurotransmitter is important for cognitive function and memory.

We advocate taking a supplement if you don’t get enough iron from your meals.

Magnesium is another important mineral for brain health. This mineral is involved in the production of GABA, a neurotransmitter that is important for sleep and relaxation.

If you don’t consume enough magnesium in your diet, supplements are advised. 

These are just some of the vitamins and minerals that are important for brain health. If you want to improve your cognitive function, we recommend talking to your doctor about which supplements are right for you.

7) Avoid alcohol and drugs

While it may be tempting to self-medicate with alcohol or drugs when you are feeling down, this is not advised.

Alcohol and drugs can actually worsen your Covid 19 mental fog and other cognitive symptoms. So, if you want to improve your brain function, we recommend avoiding these substances.

There are plenty of other ways to cope with your Covid 19 brain fog. We recommend trying some of the strategies that we have outlined in this article.

If you are struggling to cope with your cognitive symptoms, we advise talking to your doctor. They can help you find the best treatment plan for your needs.

8) Rehydrate often

One of the most common causes of brain fog is dehydration. When you are dehydrated, your body and brain don’t function as well as they should.

So, if you want to avoid mental fog, we recommend drinking plenty of water throughout the day.

We also advise avoiding caffeine, and sugary drinks as these can further dehydrate your body.

If you find it difficult to drink enough water during the day, we recommend investing in a water filter. This will make your water taste better so that you are more likely to drink it.

You can also try adding some fruit or herbs to your water to give it a more flavorful taste.

Finally, we recommend avoiding alcohol as it can dehydrate your body and worsen your brain fog.

If you are struggling to stay hydrated, we advise talking to your doctor. They can help you find the best way to stay hydrated based on your individual needs.

9) Play memory games

One of the best ways to improve your memory is to play memory games. There are plenty of apps and online games that you can try.

Memory games can help improve your attention span and concentration. They can also help you learn how to better store and recall information.

If you want to give your brain a workout, we recommend trying a memory game.

There are plenty of different games to choose from, so you can find one that suits your interests and skill level.

If you are struggling to find a memory game that you enjoy, we recommend talking to your friends or family. They may be able to suggest a game that they like.

Finally, we recommend talking to your doctor if you are struggling with your memory. They can help you find the cause of your memory problems and recommend the best treatment plan.

10) Manage your stress levels

One of the most common causes of mental fog is chronic stress. When you are stressed, your body releases cortisol. This hormone can interfere with your cognitive function and memory.

So, if you want to avoid brain fog, we recommend managing your stress levels.

There are plenty of different ways to manage stress. We recommend trying some relaxation techniques such as:

  • yoga
  • meditation
  • deep breathing exercises
  • full body massage
  • getting outside in nature
  • doing things you love
  • spending quality time with loved ones

You can also try talking to a therapist about your stressors. They can help you find healthy ways to cope with your stress.

11) Consider neuroplasticity-based therapies

If you are struggling with mental fog, we recommend considering neuroplasticity-based therapies. These therapies can help improve your cognitive function.

Neuroplasticity-based therapies involve using specific exercises and activities to retrain your brain. This therapy is also extremely helpful in aiding a traumatic brain injury.

There are a number of different neuroplasticity-based therapies that you can try. We recommend talking to your doctor about which one would be best for you.

The Bottom Line

The lingering symptoms of Covid 19, especially brain fog, can be frustrating. It can affect your day-to-day life and disrupt your productivity at work.

People who deal with Covid-19 brain fog report that this cognitive dysfunction has impacted their personal goals and relationships negatively.

Thankfully, however, there are recovery strategies that you can try to take back your mental clarity and improve your cognitive function in the long run.

Learn more about brain fog and how to fight it naturally; we have plenty of articles on the topic, and join the discussion in this online community of brain health advocates. 

Join The Mental Health Community You've Been Dreaming Of

This discord family is a safe place where we can all (anonymously if we choose) talk about and seek help for what is going on in our heads.

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