The best way to get fit at home is to stay fit and avoid the flu in the first place. With flu season around the corner, it is good to have some reminders how the best ways are to take care of yourself. Here are 10 practical ways to avoid the flu naturally.
Most experts believe that the flu virus is spread by droplets from the contagious person. It travels through sneezes, coughs, or even talking and breathing.
To Avoid the Flu Naturally
The first thing you should keep in mind is to stay away from anyone who is sick. Unless you are a caregiver for the sick person, you should try to keep at least 6 feet away, as the droplets from coughs or sneezes can travel 6 feet.
It is also possible to pick up the virus by contacting a contaminated surface. If you touch the surface, and then touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, it is possible to spread the virus to yourself. Keep surfaces clean and disinfected.
Children are the most likely and often the first to get sick. Those who are 65 or older are also more susceptible then the general population, as well.
When are you contagious?
- It is possible for you to be contagious before you are aware that you have the flu.
- The first three to four days are the most contagious time in the course of the flu.
- Some otherwise healthy adults may be able to infect others one day before symptoms occur and up to 5 – 7 days after becoming sick.
- Young children and those with weakened immune systems, may be contagious for an even longer time.
What is the incubation period for the flu?
Influenza viruses can be around all year long, but the flu season is commonly considered to be during the winter months.
Once you get the virus, how long does it take before you begin feeling ill? From the time a person is exposed until symptoms occur could be from 1 – 4 days, though it is usually around 2 days on average.
Once you have been exposed, there are 3 things to consider that influence how long it may take before you begin to feel the effects of the virus.
- Pre-exposure to a certain virus may shorten the incubation period
- How the virus enters your body, may increase or decrease the incubation period
- The larger the amount of virus you have been exposed to may shorten the incubation period
Common Symptoms of the Flu
You may wonder, do I have the flu or is it just a cold. One indicator of the flu is that it often comes on suddenly. The common cold may develop gradual symptoms rather than sudden aches and pains of the flu. Below are listed some symptoms of the flu.
- Feeling fatigued, or weak
- Aches and pains
- Dry cough
- Sore throat
- Stuffy nose
Children may have nausea, vomiting or ear pain when they have the flu.
10 Practical Ways to Avoid the Flu Naturally this Season.
So you don’t want to get the flu. Here are 10 ways you can use to avoid getting the flu naturally this season.
- Strengthen your immune system. Eat plenty of healthy fruit and vegetables. Stay hydrated. Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day. Get a good night’s sleep, every night.
- Get an annual flu vaccination.
- Avoid large crowds whenever it is possible. However avoiding large crowds can often be difficult.
- Wash your hands regularly. Wash you hands for at least 20 seconds each time you sneeze or cough and especially before you eat. And always after using the bathroom. You could carry a small bottle of hand sanitizer with you and use it after shaking hands with someone, or touching doorknobs or light switches.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. After using the tissue, dispose it in a garbage receptacle and wash your hands with soap and water.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces. Keyboards, phones and doorknobs. Clean kitchen surfaces before preparing food.
- Don’t go to school or work if you are feeling sick. Stay at home for at least 24 hours after the fever is gone.
- Visit the doctor if flu symptoms arise. Your doctor may prescribe a drug like Tamiflu. Antiviral drugs taken within the first 48 hours of symptoms, may shorten the duration and lessen the symptoms of the flu.
- Avoid ERs and Urgent Care Clinics if you don’t have to go. Unless you have trouble breathing, feel pressure or pain in your chest or your stomach, cannot stop vomiting, or a high fever develops, avoid the hospital. In the hospital you and your family will be surrounded by infectious people.
- Don’t smoke. People who smoke have a more exaggerated response to viruses, including the flu.
What to do if You Have the Flu
- Stay at home. As the flu is highly contagious, you should try to limit your contact with others. Don’t go to work or school when you are feeling sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. The flu virus often enters the body through the eyes, nose and mouth.
- Wash your hands frequently. This cannot be stressed often enough. We touch our faces unconsciously often during the day. By washing our hands frequently, we will avoid contaminating ourselves and our surroundings. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Use a tissue. When you cough or sneeze, cover your sneeze with a paper tissue, then promptly dispose it in a garbage receptacle. If a paper tissue is not available, use the crook of your elbow to reduce the spread or respiratory particles.
Some Specific High-Risk Groups
- Adults 65 and older
- Pregnant Women
- Young Children
- Heart Disease
- Children with Neurological Conditions
How to Avoid the Flu Naturally
Remember that the flu is very contagious and can easily be spread from one person to another. Stay at home if you are not feeling well to keep from spreading the virus to others.
The influenza vaccine is available every year to help protect you from coming down with the flu. The vaccine is recommended for those over the age of 6 months. It is not recommended to anyone who has had a severe reaction in the past to the flu vaccine or any of its ingredients.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the influenza vaccine is the most effective way to prevent yourself from becoming sick with the flu. And if you do get the flu, it should be milder and with fewer complications.
Please Leave a Comment Below
Do you get the flu frequently? What did you do to recover as quickly as possible? Do you have any special tips to avoid the flu naturally?
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional. No content on this site should be substituted for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare practitioner. The information contained here is for informational purposes only. It is from my research and personal experience.
4 thoughts on “How to Avoid the Flu Naturally in 10 Practical Ways”
A very informative post about a subject that is probably not taken serious enough, I had pneumonia 6 years ago so know the perils of taking care of yourself when it comes to respiratory afflictions. Really good to see a break down of the symptoms and what to do. We could do with more websites like this. Keep up the great work.
Thank you for your comment, Mike,
Yes, it is always good to be made aware of these things. If we are know how not to get sick it is all the better than trying to get better. The flu can be very contagious so it is best to avoid those who are sick if possible and keep our bodies well rested and well nourished.
I am sorry to hear that you did have pneumonia. It can be very serious at any age, but especially in the old and in the very young.
There are people on social media particularly Facebook saying we should not be worried about this Corona Virus that’s threatening the world and they even said that the ordinary flue has a higher fatality rate over Corona Virus. With me getting flu almost every year and the friends I know also acquire flu every now and then and no one has died, I wonder where are they getting that information that the ordinary flu is deadly? I don’t know of anyone who has died of ordinary flu but with Corona Virus, there are hundreds or even thousands dying as of today.
For most healthy adults, the flu becomes simply an inconvenience.
For babies, young children, the elderly and those with chronic conditions, more serious complications are likely to develop from the flu. Those complications can progress into pneumonia and other life-threatening complications.
During the 2017-2018 flu season the Centers for Disease Control estimated that there were a record high 61,100 flu deaths in the United States. The 65 and older age group had the highest incidences.
The Yale New Haven Health indicates that Corona Viruses are a group of viruses that are common in both humans and animals. The COVID-19 is a new type of Corona Virus, emerging late in 2019. It has traveled world-wide and more is being learned about this new virus every day.