Colds with symptoms of cough, runny nose, headache and fever is the number one reason adults miss work and kids miss school every year. It has been estimated that adults get two to three colds per year and children get even more. Influenza is even more serious with varying symptoms including sore throat, fever, headache, congestion, fatigue and body aches. In 2014 influenza killed more than 4,600 people across the United States.
So just what should you do to manage the symptoms if either a cold or the flu hits? Or even more important how do you protect yourself from either. Here are a few tips!
Washing your hands is a big deal! Health care professionals say it is the best way to prevent spreading contagious illnesses. If you can’t find soap and water just use an alcohol based sanitizer as a good back up.
Can you get sick with the flu from getting the influenza vaccine?? Absolutely NOT! The flu vaccine is a killed protein product which is impossible to actually create a virus. According to the CDC the best way to prevent influenza is to get the flu shot!
Push the fluids! Staying hydrated helps to decrease headaches and body aches. When you have a fever from illnesses your body needs about three times as much fluid. Liquids with electrolytes can help hydrate.
Do humidifiers help? You bet. Warm moist air can act as a decongestant helping to relieve some symptoms of the cold or flu.
Should you believe the old wives tale of eating chicken soup to help you feel better? The answer is yes! Soups of all kinds are helpful when you have illnesses. They help to soothe the throat and the extra fluids are a plus. Warm fluids also help open up the passages and release a lot of congestion.
So remember wash your hands and get a flu vaccine to help prevent illnesses. But if you have symptoms of a cold or the flu contact your health care provider for an appointment!