Cold and flu season is on the horizon. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to avoid cold and flu symptoms entirely this year? With over 200 viruses that cause colds, it may be nearly impossible to stay away from everyone who has a cold. However, you can minimize your discomfort and shorten the length of time it takes to get over it. These tips to prevent the common cold may help you stay healthy and breathe easier this cold and flu season.
Having Your Go-To Medicine
Look through your medicine cabinet to see if you need to replace any low or outdated over-the-counter flu medicine or other remedies that minimize cold symptoms. It’s always a good idea to periodically stock up on those medications that can give you relief when you get a cold. That way, if you do get sick, you can recuperate without having to run around finding the medicines that make you feel better.
You may also want to keep beverages with electrolytes and chicken stock or bone broth on hand to help you stay hydrated when you don’t feel your best. While you are at the store, grab disinfectant spray or wipes as well to keep surfaces clean. It’s surprisingly easy to get germs from doorknobs, cell phones, and even toys, but with frequent disinfecting, you can minimize your risk of exposure.
Protecting Yourself & Others
While cleanliness makes a significant difference, you have other proactive steps to reduce your chances of catching a cold or the flu. Give these dos and don’ts a try:
- Do wash your hands. Soap and water for 20 seconds are all it takes, but you can use hand sanitizer if you are not near a sink. Make it a habit, and you may be surprised at how much it helps.
- Don’t smoke or drink in excess. Smoking is not doing your body any favors, so try again to quit. Alcohol is fine in moderation, but as it can be dehydrating, limit the amount you drink and boost your water intake to counterbalance it.
- Do exercise and eat healthy foods. No amount of cold prevention can be adequate if you are not in good health to begin with. With regular physical activity and a diet rich in vitamins and nutrients, you can boost your immune system.
- Don’t touch your face. Cold germs on your hands do not magically head to your respiratory system. However, when you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, you are introducing viruses to mucous membranes, giving them a fighting chance of sticking around for the next seven to 10 days.
- Do get enough rest. Most people do not get as much sleep as their bodies need. Aim to catch up on some ZZ’s by going to bed a little earlier and turning off any devices like your television, laptop, or cell phone.
Sometimes, despite your best intentions, you can still contract a cold or the flu. If that happens, rely on your stockpile of relief symptoms, including Brillia cough control and a decongestant to help you clear any stuffiness and rest better. Be sure to check with your doctor if your symptoms worsen or last longer than two weeks.