Tips to Survive the Flu

Each year, the threat of cold and flu season strikes. Hand sanitizer and tissues are passed around, Vitamin C is consumed, and the inevitable sick calls are made to schools and businesses. We’ve put together a survival kit with tips to get you through the season with tips for preparing, preventing, and managing the flu.

Prepare

Before flu season begins, get your home ready. Stock-up on all of the items you’ll need if someone in your household becomes the victim of a virus. Fill your medicine cabinet and kitchen with the following:

  • Thermometers
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Pain reliever
  • Decongestants
  • Tissues
  • Herbal tea
  • Fluids

While, ideally, you won’t end up needing these items, you’ll be happy to have them on hand if someone in your household gets a virus.

Prevent

After getting ready for the risk of getting the flu, take steps to prevent it. Start with washing your hands thoroughly and frequently. It may seem obvious, but children (and adults) can always use the reminder to wash often with warm, soapy water. To ensure that you’re washing thoroughly, try singing Happy Birthday two times while scrubbing.

Some people may choose to get a flu shot. A flu shot can save you the trouble of dealing with taking time away from work or school. You’ll also want to be sure that you’re lessening the chance of spreading germs. There are a few ways you can do this:

  • Disinfect items that are frequently touched by multiple people.
  • Throw away used tissues immediately.
  • Wash laundry, including towels, frequently.
  • Use disposable items like cups and paper towels when one family member is sick.
  • For children especially, wash all comfort items that they keep near them when sick.

Manage

Even after preparing and taking steps toward preventing the flu, there is always a chance of catching the virus. If you find that you’re sick, stay home. Even those with a full schedule and a busy workweek should take this advice. Pushing yourself to get through the day will not only take a toll on your body, but you’ll also be spreading the flu virus to everyone you interact with throughout the day. Instead, take the time to rest up.

When you’re sick, you’ll probably be focused on one thing: getting better. Here are a few ways to bounce back:

  • A spoonful of honey can reduce coughing.
  • Drink plenty of fluids to thin mucus.
  • Hot drinks will relieve congestion.
  • Antiviral drugs can dull symptoms.

If vomiting and diarrhea are present in young children, the stomach flu may be the cause. The stomach flu will make a child more likely to become dehydrated. To prevent dehydration, be sure the child is getting enough minerals and nutrients. Sodas and juices won’t do the trick. Instead, choose a drink with electrolytes while limiting food intake.

Cold and flu season is never fun. However, taking some steps to prepare, prevent, and manage the virus can lessen your time spent on the couch and get you back to being healthy.

ATTENTION: Help prevent the flu and a troubled tummy by cleaning toys and door handles.