Thursday, October 21, 2010

Uh-Oh! Cold And Flu Season Has Arrived!!!

With cold and flu season already here it's time to review some of the best cold and flu products to use!  My 6 year old is in first grade and it seems like he gets everything there is possible.  School is one big pot of germs and bacteria.  I get my children vaccinated but they still seem to come down with viruses.  Flu shots do not prevent all illnesses but the believed most popular ones of the season.  Every year i get my flu shot and last year the H1N1 too.  I know there is allot of controversy over flu shots but i get my flu shot each year and the shot does not make me sick.  Even most doctors get a  flu shot!  If you have become ill after a flu shot it is more than likely that you were exposed to a virus before you got the vaccine.  If you do not currently have health insurance check your local drug store of grocery store in your area .  I would recommend anyone that is a caregiver to children or elderly to get the vaccine.
First lets desifer the difference between a cold and the flu.

                                COLD                                                                        FLU
Fever-                      Rare                                                                           100-102 temp
Headache-               Rare                                                                            Prominent
General Aches-        Slight                                                                           Usual,Often Severe
Fatigue-                   Mild                                                                             Can last 2-3 Weeks
Exhaustion-              Never                                                                           Early and Prominent
Stuffy Nose-            Common                                                                       Sometimes
Sneezing-                 Usual                                                                            Sometimes
Sore Throat-            Common                                                                       Sometimes
Chest Discomfort-    Mild- Moderate                                                            Common,Severe
Complications-         Sinus Congestion or Earache                                         Bronchitis,Pneumonia
Prevention-              Good Hygiene                                                               Flu Shot or Flu Mist

Now that you have determined if you have a cold or a flu, you can treat it.  These are some of my favorite products to treat a flu or cold.
#1.  A must have on my list is KLEENEX.  Not just any Kleenex but Kleenex that contains aloe.  The aloe in the tissues moisturize my nose without making it dry and red. We all know how irritating and uncomfortable a raw red nose can make you!
#2.  An antiviral medication such as TAMIFLU.  Antiviral medications should be taken within the first 48 hours of your first symptoms.
#3.  Make sure you have plenty of  HAND SANITIZER.  I would recommend Germ X for adults and Baby Ganics foaming tangerine hand sanitizer for children.  Hand sanitizers eliminate most germs and can come in handy in your diaper bag for when your away from home.
#4.  COUGH DROPS- While cough drops don't seem to work that well i have found that Halls Menthol -Lyptus work the best.  They contain both menthol and eucalyptus which are both proven to help open and soothe sinuses by liquefying mucous and sapping tissue irritation.
#5.  For night time issues i like VICK'S NYQUIL.  It helps ease me to sleep on nights when i feel miserable.
#6.  For chest discomfort try applying some VICK'S VAPOR RUB which will help relieve cough symptoms.
#7.  For extra help buy a VICK'S HOT STEAM INHALER- Works to open nasal passages and relieves congestion.  You can buy menthol pads but be aware they are quite expensive.  They may be expensive but in the time of need it is worth it.  They are also very helpful to help relieve symptoms of Bronchitis.
#8.  Drink plenty of FLUIDS.  This is especially important in children.
#9.  Take IBUPROFEN or ACETAMINOPHEN for reducing fevers and easing sore muscles and joints.
#10.  You may chose to take a cough medicine but please be aware, it is best to take cough suppressants only at night.  If you are very congested it is best to cough it up and spit it out because phlegm keeps the virus in the body and we want to get it out! 
#11.  And last but not least, make sure to get plenty of rest and stay home if possible.