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Whether introverts or extroverts, it’s been hard for all children



Over the last few months since Covid-19 pandemic broke out, families have had to grapple with a significant amount of changes in their lives; including increased levels of stress and anxiety now that everyone is at home. For the children whose school routine was disrupted, things are not any easier as with a lot of time on their hands, they may find the long days boring.

For introverted children, staying home all day can reinforce anxiety as they may feel like their space is being interfered with while extroverted children may tend to feel lonely.

Agnes Muthami, a mother of three children aged 19, 14 and 12 says two of her children are introverts while one is an extrovert. “For the introverts, this period is not a difficult moment for them, but for the extrovert its quite a challenge,” says Agnes who is married Josphat Muthami.

She offers: “They all have various responsibilities and chores that they have to attend to in the morning. Once they are done, they get involved

in their private activities. The introverts have a liking for watching movies, which they do once they are done with their studies.”

Keeping children busy

As for the extroverted child, Agnes says they have had to stop her from going out to socialise. “We give her school work that channels her attention from her extroverted nature. By the time she is done, she is exhausted both mentally and physically and she ends up taking a nap. When she wakes up it is usually late,” explains Agnes.

During this time of Covid-19, Agnes says her children have an understanding that it is dangerous to freely interact with people, hence for the months they have been at home, they have adapted to the change.

“The girls also do take some time to engage in online dance classes while the boy is taking online Spanish classes. This has pretty much helped to keep them occupied and reduced boredom,” she says.

Caroline Gikunda, is a mother of an extroverted boy aged 12. “I am glad that his school is expressing its concern by going an extra mile and keeping him on his toes through constant revision online. It’s even a good thing that his teachers actually reach out on phone, asking how he is coping. When one Mr Kiburi calls and reminds him to have his education in mind amid the pandemic, those words stick in his mind,” she says.

Caroline Gikunda and her 12-year-old son who is an extrovert.

According to Gikunda, whether a child is an int rove rt or an ext rove rt, we can’t over look the disappointment of unmet expectations or the uncertainty of the untold future. “As far as he is concerned, he has done his best and can’t take in the possibility of having to repeat the same class another year,” she says.

Gikunda says since her son is the only child, it’s been tricky when it comes to socialisation as this means going out of the compound to look for his play mates or inviting someone to our home, something that the Ministry of Health guidelines is against.

She offers: “Apart from his school work, I have kept him occupied. We do play some light games. He loves exercising and he trains me on the same. He has been teaching me how to ride a bicycle. He has been taking care of his cat and dog, shampooing them more often than necessary, spraying, feeding arid taking them for a walk around the compound. We also do some gardening. He has his own seedbed and certain flower pots that he takes care of. Other times, he plays play station, watches cartoons and solves word puzzles.”

Caroline Nekesa, a mother of three says while her daughter who is the eldest is an introvert and tends to enjoy her space, her son is extroverted and has to leave the house after every 30 minutes.

” My daughter who is 10 years old would rather spend time playing games on the computer, writing her journal and reading. She doesn’t even go out to play, not unless we force her to. She hates sharing her room with her brothers who are seven and three years,” says Nekesa.

Managing personalities

According to Mercy Mwasi, a child and adolescent counsellor at Amani Counselling Centre and Training Institute, it is important for parents to identify their children’s personality traits in order to understand them better and help them cope with each other’s personalities as well as other members of the family.

“While the introverted child may seem favoured by this situation [Covid- 19 lockdown], they have been forced by circumstances to put up with other members of the family who may be extroverted, a situation which denies them the privacy and quiet they so much desire. Equally, extroverted children are highly disadvantaged since they would like to explore the outdoors, which is not possible,” explains Mwasi.

The dilemma facing parents currently is how they would combat the existing conditions in favour of the introverted and extroverted children alike in a family setup.

Mwasi offers: “Personalities cannot be changed1 However, they can be managed in order for the children with the two differing traits to accommodate one another.

Both introverted and extroverted children have a measure of dopamine hormone [a brain chemical when released one experiences satisfaction, pleasure, motivation, and drive to keep going), which catalyses irresistible happiness and a desire to explore their world and socialise with others.”

A parent with both introverted and extroverted children in the same house should help them strike a balance in a bid to accommodate each other This would strike a middle ground for the co-existence of both personalities and avert unnecessary conflict.

For the introverted children, it would still be important to have that level of personal space they need. For example, amidst clutter in the house, the parents need to acknowledge the need for such a child to engage in independent activities such as house chores, reading, playing indoors, computer games or watching their favourite TV shows.

However, given the confining conditions of Covid-19, this personal space for introverts should be monitored to avoid over indulgence, which may lead to antisocial behaviour.


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NMS apologises for Pumwani child birth fiasco, takes actions



All the four hospitals in the capital, which are run by the Nairobi County government, will now be manned by officers from the National Police Service to prevent disruption of services.

The Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) announced this on Saturday after making several changes at Pumwani Maternity Hospital following an incident on September 13 in which a woman gave birth at the gate.

In a statement, NMS’ Director of Health Services, Dr Josephine Kibaru-Mbae, explained that the woman was denied entry into the facility.

Dr Kibaru-Mbae noted that the incident took place two days after nurses began a legal go-slow but added that essential services were still being offered.

“The security guard denied the patient access to the premises in a very unfortunate incident [but] a nurse from the maternity ward was notified,” she said, adding the medic rushed to the scene and helped with the delivery and the patient’s admission.


The agency apologised for the incident and said that going forward, officers from the NPS will augment provision of security at the four main county hospitals.

The other three are Mbagathi, Mama Lucy Kibaki and Mutuini.

“We take this opportunity to apologise to all Kenyans and mothers in particular for this unfortunate incident,” Dr Kibaru-Mbae said.

She assured the safety of the mother and child, saying they were both well and were discharged on Friday.

“NMS commends the nurses who quickly assisted the patient,” she said, adding Pumwani’s security team was changed and a customer care desk set up.

“NMS commits to train front office staff in all its facilities,” she added.

This is not the first time Pumwani has been in the limelight for the wrong reasons. Cases of mothers delivering outside the wards as well as those of child theft have been rife at the health facility.


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All about subdural hematoma, condition Nameless’ dad has been suffering from



Kenyan artiste Nameless has revealed that his dad has been ailing from a condition known as Subdural Hematoma in medical terms.

A subdural hematoma is a collection of blood outside the brain. It occurs when there is a head injury.

The bleeding is under the skull and outside the brain, not in the brain itself. As blood pools, however, it puts more pressure on the brain.

In the case of Nameless dad, the condition had led to clots in the head which in turn were causing minor strokes.

Below are things to learn about the condition.

There are different symptoms to Subdural hematoma and some include

  • Confusion
  • Headache
  • Change in behavior
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Lethargy or excessive drowsiness
  • Weakness
  • Apathy
  • Seizures

The symptoms in subdural hematoma patients are not standard, it varies from one patient to another.

The conditions that influence the symptoms one has when battling subdural hematoma include

  • The size of the hematoma
  • Age of the patient
  • Other underlying medical conditions

Hematoma is majorly caused by a head injury, such as from a fall, motor vehicle collision, or an assault.

The sudden blow to the head tears blood vessels that run along the surface of the brain.

A subdural hematoma can be diagnosed using imaging tests, such as a CT or MRI scan.

Your doctor may also give you a physical examination to check your heart rate and blood pressure for evidence of internal bleeding.

An acute subdural hematoma can only be treated in an operating room.

A surgical procedure called a craniotomy may be used to remove a large subdural hematoma.

It’s normally used to treat acute subdural hematomas. In this procedure, your surgeon removes a part of your skull in order to access the clot or hematoma.

They then use suction and irrigation to remove it.

Results of hematoma may include

  • brain herniation, which puts pressure on your brain and can cause a coma or death
  • seizures
  • permanent muscle weakness or numbness.


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Couple’s triumph after testing positive



At the beginning of July this year, Geoffrey Alemba, a protocol officer in an international organisation in Nairobi was suffering from severe fever. He did not think much of it, hence he suffered through it for two more nights before seeking treatment on July 3 upon his wife, Sylvie’s insistence. The tests showed he had an acute bacterial infection. He was put on medication and went back home. By Monday July 5, the symptoms worsened , with a backache setting in.

When he began exhibiting Covid-19 symptoms such as nausea and dry throat he decided to seek treatment on July 8, with Sylvie offering to drive him to the hospital. His wife stayed with him as the doctors conducted a battery of tests, ranging from CT Scans to blood tests.

The last test was the nose swab whose results were expected to come out in 24 hours. Geoffrey was admitted and put on isolation, while Sylvie drove home, only to be arrested on her way there for staying out past curfew hours. After a tense twenty- four hours wait, Geoffrey was diagnosed positive.

Death sentence

“I remember breaking down after receiving the diagnosis. All I could remember immediately the doctor stepped out was the constant mention of death and Covid-19 in the same breath. It felt like a death sentence,” Geoffrey explains.

Geoffrey was also in shock as he had been careful both at work and at home. He was the guy who would always have a mask on, and was a vocal advocate for social distancing measures, putting on masks, hand washing and using sanitisers.

He called his wife immediately after his diagnosis and urged her to get tested. Sylvie tested positive, but with no symptoms.

After two days, his symptoms worsened, which necessitated him to be put on oxygen for four days. His doctor told him he was being treated for pneumonia and was put on drip for 10 of the 12 days he was admitted due to loss of appetite.

His body responded well to treatment and he stabilised enough for the second Covid test to be done before being released from hospital. The test came out positive and they opted for home-based care.

Sylvie had to prove that their home was fit to accommodate an ailing patient without posing a risk to other people, as per the Ministry of Health home care guidelines.


Sylvie rearranged their second bedroom and bathroom into his quarantine quarters, bought paper plates and cups to prevent cross infection and he was discharged armed with multi-vitamins and an inhaler.

“First of all, if it wasn’t for God, it would have been worse. I thank him for life and for Sylvie. Sylvie has been supportive. She would cook for me masked and wearing gloves, place the food and drinks for me in disposable plates and cups, and gave me emotional support via phone through it all,” Geoffrey enthuses.

Geoffrey just finished using his inhaler two weeks ago, though he is still on multivitamins for an immunity boost. Four tests later, he has tested negative twice and is back to work. After five tests, his wife is also negative and back to work too.

“People at the office have been supportive. I cannot say I have been stigmatised on that end. Our landlord and neighbours have also been kind and supportive. Of course, there is that fear that you can almost feel emanating from friends. There is also this one incident which I find more hilarious than hurtful. I had parked my car in a place where the guard knows me. He came to check the car and on seeing me, quickly pulled up his mask, which had been lying on his chin and took off without a word,” he further elaborates.

Alemba is still a passionate advocate for people to practice the MOH guidelines for Covid-19 prevention. He is testament to the fact that Covid is real; he has a sizeable dent in his finances to show for it. He talks of the need to care for others as one can be asymptomatic and easily spread it to others. He talks with reverence of the doctors and nurses who walked him to recovery.

“Seeing the nurses sweating and still smiling in their PPEs as they took care of us was quite humbling. One nurse told us of how the neighbour’s children run away from her whenever they spot her since they know she works with Covid patients.

“Knowing that there are all these people who stand between the ailing and certain death is quite sobering. If for no other reason, they should inspire you to be better just so you do not unnecessarily risk their lives. This whole experience has made me be want to be kinder and to be gentle towards other people and their experiences. You never know what someone has gone through. Even when they share it, you may not grasp its full depth or breadth,” he concludes.


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