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From running thriving business to being unable to leave home: Aberdeen Long Covid sufferer says more needs to be done

Mrs Stott has rarely been able to leave the house and has had to close her business after contracting Long Covid. Supplied by Kate Stott.
Mrs Stott has rarely been able to leave the house and has had to close her business after contracting Long Covid. Supplied by Kate Stott.

Kate Stott went to bed with a sore throat over two years ago and has struggled to leave the house much since.

After first contracting Covid in March 2020 before the national lockdown was implemented, Mrs Stott’s life has not been the same.

Months after experiencing “bone crushing” fatigue, neuro symptoms, joint seizure and a variety of other strange symptoms, the 35-year-old was diagnosed with Long Covid.

The mother-of-three’s life has changed drastically since even forcing her to close her thriving business, Beauty Booker, a few weeks ago.

Bed bound for six weeks

Mrs Stott said the first few months after getting Covid were a blur: “I was just sleeping a lot, kind of coming to and having some food and then going back to sleep again.

“I would say for the first six weeks, I was in bed, completely bed bound.

“And then it progressively just got more strange.

The mother-of-three said she experienced very strange symptoms from Long Covid and now has to use crutches. Supplied by Kate Stott.

“From there, I would get some energy back and then I would lose function in my right arm. And I couldn’t hold things like a jug of milk.”

Symptoms ‘change constantly’

She said: “It’s still kind of unbelievable to think it’s been two years and there’s just such a stark contrast of life before with working with Beauty Booker and and how busy it was and how much I was enjoying it. To what it’s become now.”

Her symptoms vary daily, making it hard to keep track or to have a routine, however, she now has to use crutches.

“With Long Covid, it’s very much considered a relapsing remitting disease,” she said. “So every time you kind of get your head around one kind of set of symptoms, it will change again.

Mrs Stott with her three children, Jude (5), Elle (14) and Beau (5). Supplied by Kate Stott

“You might get vertigo, you might get dizziness, you might get problems with your mobility, your heart rate or your breathing. So it’s changes constantly. And it’s quite hard to keep up.”

This makes it hard for her to makes plans with friends or to even spend time helping her kids with their homework.

She said: “In terms of my kids, I just want to be able to take them to the park again. I want to be able to come pick them up from school.

“But I guess the biggest thing for me for them is, I want to be able to enjoy them outside this house, and I want to be part of their memories outside the house.”

‘Somebody needs to be fighting for them’

Kate and her husband Barry. Supplied by Kate Stott.

Mrs Stott said her husband Barry has been amazing throughout this time with supporting her and looking after the kids but she said not everyone is that fortunate.

She added: “You know, there’s people out there that are on their own with this, with no support and no help. And I just can’t imagine how difficult it must be for them.

“There’s no way I could work just now. And that’s why I feel so strongly about speaking out about Long Covid is because I have that choice to pause and maybe revisit at a later date, but there’s so many out there that are suffering.”

It is estimated that a total of 151,ooo people are living with Long Covid in Scotland. Around 24% of these say that their lives have been affected ‘a lot’.

Some long-term effects of Covid-19. Shutterstock.

Many in similar situations to Mrs Stott will be using up their sick pay but as Long Covid is not classed as a disability, there are not many opportunities to claim support.

She said: “All four nations need to come together and seriously look at long Covid. The UK as a nation can’t afford to lose any more health workers, or teachers.

“And if we’re going to be serious about leveling up, and making sure that our skilled workers are in their jobs, then we have to tackle Long Covid as well.”

Cases are increasing every month

Mrs Stott added: “The most important thing we can do right now is, is educate people on Covid.

“We need to remove the stigma, we need to speak about it. But people also need to advocate for their friends and family that may be suffering, because some people are not able to do that just now.

“They’re bed bound, they can’t speak, they’re in pain, and somebody needs to be fighting for them.”

Mrs Stott’s call for action is being echoed by Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland as the number of those struggling with Long Covid continues to rise.

Jane-Claire Judson, chief executive at the organisation said: “The number of people living with the long term effects of Long Covid is increasing at an alarming rate.

“Every month more and more people are needing support and progress to meet their needs for care just isn’t fast enough. They deserve better and we need to see more urgent action from the Scottish Government.

“People might feel we are getting back to some kind of normality, but so many people with Long Covid feel there is no return to normality in sight.”


If you are living with Long Covid and looking for more information, contact Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland’s Long Covid Advice Line on 0808 801 0899 or email adviceline@chss.org.uk

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