Monday, January 28, 2013

What to do When Suffering with the Flu

It is incredibly important that everyone get their flu shot this year. Flu season is at an all time high and the flu shot might be your only hope at not contracting the debilitating virus. Hundreds of thousands of people have been suffering from the flu across the United States. If you happen to be one of the unlucky ones to come down with the flu, here are a few tips to help ease suffering while overcoming this sickness.

Signs you Might have the Flu
If you have started coughing or sneezing or felt a tickle in your throat, you might be on your way to developing the flu. Other symptoms that are linked directly to the flu include: achy muscles, respiratory problems and a fever.

Thing you can do to Ease Symptoms:
Antiviral: Right now there are two different prescription drugs that can be taken to fight the flu. The first is called Tamiflu and is an oral medication. The second is called Relenza and is an inhaled powder. Both will help keep you out of bed one to two days less than you usually would be in bed with the flu. They also help keep you from getting incredibly ill, but the kicker is that they must be taken within two days of the start of your symptoms in order to be effective.
Analgesics: Over-the-counter pain relievers such as Tylenol (acetaminophen) and Ibuprofen can help greatly reduce aches and pains as well as a fever. Please keep in mind that patients who have a history of asthma or high blood pressure should consult their physician before taking this medication.
Fluids: The doctor always tells you to drink lots of clear fluids AKA lots and lots of WATER! When anyone is ill with a fever, dehydration can occur as well. If you are having trouble keeping water down, try sucking on ice cubes or ice pops. This can also help with a sore throat.
Medications Available Over-the-Counter: Medications such as decongestants and antihistamines can help relieve symptoms such as a runny or congested nose or a cough. Antihistamines are also great for helping with sleep. Another thing you can do to relieve symptoms include cough drops for a scratchy throat.
Rest: The most important thing you can do when you are sick is to stay home and get lots of rest. When you have the flu, your body feels so run down that being at work or school is no good for you and will only make you feel worse. Take time off to get better and keep your germs to yourself.

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