Don’t let the flu hold you back in this holiday season.
The flu typically tends to pop up in the colder months around the holidays—and every year about 5-9% of the population gets the flu. Fortunately, there are things you can do to reduce the likelihood of contracting the flu.
What Are the Symptoms of the Flu?
Once the flu virus enters your body, it takes about 1-4 days for you to exhibit symptoms. Common symptoms of the flu are fever, body aches, chills, a sore throat, headaches, cough, and a runny or stuffy nose. Symptoms last anywhere from a few days to two weeks, and must be carefully monitored because symptoms can lead to serious flu-related illnesses. Additionally, flu symptoms in children can be different from those in adults. Regardless, getting sick with the flu will put your daily life on pause as you tend to symptoms and recover.
How to Prevent the Flu
Getting the flu can disrupt your daily life and put a wrench in your plans. It can also potentially lead to further illnesses and complications. Luckily, there are simple things you can do to help you avoid the flu.
Wash Your Hands
Washing your hands is one of the easiest ways to avoid the flu. Flu germs can live on surfaces for up to 8 hours, which is why simply touching an object with the virus on it means you can get it. If you wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds under warm water with soap, you are less likely to contract the flu. It is especially important to wash your hands upon entering and leaving a new environment, before eating, and after using the bathroom. And although hand sanitizer is said to kill germs, it is not as effective as proper handwashing. Along with washing your hands, avoid touching your face and mouth to minimize the spread of germs and viruses into your body.
Eat healthy, balanced meals to prevent the flu. When you choose fruits, vegetables, and healthy grains or meat over refined sugar, excessive carbs, and deep-fried food, you are doing your body a favor. Eating healthy helps strengthen your immune system which will make it harder to contract the flu.
Just like healthy eating, getting a proper amount of exercise also helps boost your immune system and helps it fight off any viruses. The recommended amount of exercise is at least half an hour of moderate physical activity a day.
How to Treat the Flu
There is no “cure” for the flu, however, there are ways to manage your symptoms. If you do end up getting the flu, there are four main things you can do to help alleviate those bothersome symptoms.
Drink anything and everything you can—water, juice, sports drinks, and broths are great options. When you get the flu, it is important to stay hydrated and drink as many liquids as you can. This will help keep your respiratory system hydrated and turn mucus into a thin liquid that you can easily get out of your body. If you don’t stay properly hydrated, mucus could build up in your lungs and lead to an infection. If you have a hard time meeting your water goals, enhance your hydration with CBD powder packets to add to your water.
Another important component of treating the flu is to rest as much as you can. Sleep helps your body to fight off any virus your immune system is battling. Sleep in late, go to bed early, and take naps to ensure that you are getting as much rest as you can. This will help you recover quicker. Rest and sleep also help reduce the risk of flu complications, such as pneumonia.
Use Over-the-counter Medication
Your local drugstore could be one of the biggest helpers when it comes to treating the flu. There are dozens of medications to pick from that all aim to relieve flu symptoms. Some target specific symptoms, while others work to treat all symptoms. Some helpful medications to consider taking are pain relievers, decongestants, cough suppressants, expectorants, and antihistamines.
Try a Humidifier
Dry air can worsen your flu symptoms. Adding moisture to the air through using a vaporizer or a humidifier can ease symptoms and can help loosen up congestion. If you do not wish to use one of these devices, taking a long, hot bath or shower can have the same effect because of the steam. Be sure to add in products that further alleviate your congestion. It features all-natural ingredients like eucalyptus oil, known for its respiratory properties.
The flu can put a serious damper on your holiday season, but there are always things to do to prevent it. If you do find yourself with the flu, proper rest, hydration, and medicine can help you feel better in no time. Remember to consult your doctor if any symptoms worsen.