Flu season is almost upon us so it pays to be prepared. Here are a few things you can do to minimise your risk of flu, or if you’ve got it already, some ways to get over it as quickly as possible.
Get your flu jab
It’s a myth that the flu jab can actually give you flu, because it doesn’t actually contain the live flu virus. If you’re in a high-risk group* it’s important to have the flu jab every year.
* High-risk people are those over 65 years old, between 6 months and 2 years old, the very overweight, those with serious health conditions, or those who have people that seriously depend on them.
Wash your hands regularly
- This goes without saying – especially around flu season. You touch hundreds of things a day, even if you don’t realise it – so to reduce the risk of spreading germs and coming into contact with germs yourself, make sure to wash your hands regularly throughout the day.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Your eyes, nose and mouth are the most direct route into the body for bacteria and viruses. So in conjunction with the above point regarding hand hygiene, try to avoid rubbing your eyes and nose, or biting your nails – that sort of thing. During flu season, these all seek to maximise your chances of catching the flu, especially if you spend time in public places, like the tube.
And if you’ve got the flu already…
Stay in bed
It’s a good idea to get a lot of rest anyway, but keeping yourself in bed will help prevent the spread of flu.
Drink lots of water
When you have a fever, you lose a lot of water from your body – so it’s absolutely vital to replenish your supply. Secondly, doing so can help to ease the pain of a sore throat, and contributes to keeping mucus thin.
Elevate your head at night
You might find that your cough symptoms get better during the day, and worse at night. That’s because the fluid stays down when you’re upright, and comes up again when you’re laying down. To minimise the effects of this, use an extra pillow at night – you may find yourself sleeping a lot better.