Our body try to immune us from various viral flu, whenever they infect us. But it has a limitation, and may sometimes fail to protect us from the dreadful viruses.
There are more than 200 common cold viruses and three types of flu virus, with many different strains. It’s hard to avoid all these viruses. The attack is more evident during climate change or when the infection gets an epidemic.
Cold and flu are uncomfortable. Their onset begins with flu symptoms like itchy palate, sore throat, running nose, headaches, and fever. For normal flu, your body will recover gradually, but for the certain flu, you might need to see a doctor.
While you recover from the flu, you can try the following treatment to reduce the irritating complication caused due to flu.
How to get Rid of a Sore Throat and itchy palate
A sore throat is the most common and annoying symptoms of flu. It makes eating and drinking painful. It lasts for 5-6 days or even more. It vanishes as soon as you recover from the flu. Following sore throat remedies can reduce the irritating effect caused due to infection. It can also be helpful in strep throat (throat infection by bacteria). Symptoms of strep throat will be same as a sore throat like inflamed tonsils, swollen lymph nodes on upper neck, white patches on tonsils, headache, and so on.
- Hydrate yourself with hot fluids like soup, tea, coffee to reduce throat irritation
- Gargle salt water to reduces swelling in the throat
- Use a humidifier or vaporizer in your bedroom
- Avoid smoking
- Use nonprescription throat lozenges
- Use local anesthetic throat lozenges
For runny nose
A runny nose can be overcome by using following treatment.
- Use saline nasal spray (consult doctor before use)
- Blow your nose often with soft tissue
- Soak a towel in warm water and place it on your face
- Massage your earlobe for 10-20 seconds ( repeat on both sides)
- Apply vapor rub if it is not irritating to skin
Tips to avoid cold and flu viruses
Flu and cold are viral. It can spread rapidly among people who are exposed directly or indirectly to it. But there are few tips that can be helpful to keep yourself protected from flu.
- Avoid touching your face with hands, especially your nose and mouth
- Wash your hands often throughout the day
- Cover your face with a mask in a congested area or public places
- Keep your immune system strong. Scientific research has shown that moderate exercise can boost your immune system.
Some natural home remedies for flu, cold and sore throats
We take medicines as well as some home remedies to recover from the viral flu. If symptoms of the flu are mild, these home remedies help. You might not need to see a doctor, if any of this home remedy for a sore throat works.
- Gargle with lemon water
- Licorice or marshmallow root for a sore throat
- Use peppermint as sore throat medicines (contains menthol that soothes a sore throat)
- Eucalyptus and Chamomile tea
- Honey mixed in tea or taken on its own
- Use ginseng
- Take hot drinks with honey. Even WHO recommends honey for flu treatment.
- Consume hot soup with garlic mixed with it
- Inhale heated steam
- Warm the feet with hot water
- Take 20-30 drops of echinacea in half cup of water three times daily.
- Add garlic and ginger to your meals. They have some strong anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory abilities. Research work shows that ginger with goldenrod can inhibit Influenza virus.
What food to eat when you have flu
It’s often a dilemma on what to eat when you are ill. Your body needs the energy to fight infection. Food you can eat while you have flu are
- Hot Soup- Vegetable, ginger, garlic, etc
- Hot green or black Tea
- Oatmeal and banana
- Yogurt and kefir
Treatment precaution for cold and flu
Cold and flu can become severe when they are handled in the wrong way. Make sure you take precaution while treating cold and flu.
- Remember that flu is caused due to the virus and not bacteria. Antibiotics are not effective if a person has the viral flu. Treatment of viral flu should be done with anti-viral medication and not antibiotics.
- Don’t leave flu untreated on the assurance of your body immune system. Some flu remains more than 8-10 days, it is better to see a doctor.
Myths about flu
- Cure fever by eating less
- Flu shot assures immunity against all type of viruses
- You can catch flu from the flu vaccine
- If you get the flu shot too early, the immunity will “wear off” before flu season is over
There’s an old saying that “you should starve a fever and feed a cold”. Not true! Going without food when you’re hungry will make things worse. Even if you aren’t hungry, staying hydrated is crucial. So try for light juices, smoothies, or broths.
The virus may become resistance and non-responsive to vaccines after a period. So, flu shot taken once does not guarantee immunity against all kinds of viruses.
There is a misconception about getting the flu from the flu shot. The virus present in the flu shot is in an inactive form, and cannot cause the flu. Unless the flu shot is not maintained under controlled temperature.
There is no evidence that getting your flu shot early will mean the immunity wears off, or that getting your flu-shot twice in one single season can give more immunity.
It ‘s hard to keep yourself protected from flu viruses. The best way to avoid the flu is to avoid exposure to these viruses. The most common medium of transmission is through hands, mouth and nose. If you keep these germs away from sensory organs, you are less prone to cold and flu.