If it seems like everyone is suffering from the flu at the moment, it’s because they probably are.
Headaches, fever, blocked sinuses, cough, sore throat and runny nose are just some of the symptoms that go hand-in-hand with the illness so if you’re struggling on the frontline, our thoughts are with you at this difficult time.
Lots of rest and fluids are essential but here are a few extra things you can do to try to improve the situation…
Taking a vitamin C supplement isn’t likely to prevent a cold. However, studies show that it may reduce the duration of colds. A 2013 review of studies noted that regular supplementation (1 to 2 grams daily) reduced the duration and severity of colds.
The worst part of the flu is getting a blocked nose, and waking up about 100 times a night because you can’t breathe. A nasal rinse or spray is a great way to clear out those sinuses. You can pop the little bottle in your handbag for quick relief at work.
When it comes to fighting flu, natural remedies can often be one of our best weapons. Tumeric and ginger are both widely recognised for their anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties so try using both for double the impact. There are loads of recipes online, here’s one for a turmeric and ginger elixir.
Drinking plenty of fluids is always good when you’re trying to get rid of a cold. Hot tea, water, chicken soup, and other liquids will keep you hydrated, especially if you have a fever. They can also loosen congestion in your chest and nasal passages so you can breathe.
Avoid caffeine and alcohol, though, because they can leave you dehydrated, and they can interfere with the sleep and rest you need for recovery.
If you're having trouble getting good sleep to beat a cold, try honey, one of the most relied-on remedies for treating cold symptoms. A 2012 study showed that a spoonful of honey at bedtime can help you sleep better and reduce nighttime coughing. It can also help soothe a sore throat.
It’s definitely worth splashing out on some soft tissues. Using toilet roll from the office is essential like rubbing sandpaper on your face and you’ll look like Rudolph by the end of day one. You deserve this little luxury when you're not feeling the best.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends you get extra rest when you have a cold.
While it can be tempting to try and boost your immune system with exercise, it’s probably best to take it easy for a few days. In fact, if you don’t get enough sleep day to day, you may be increasing your vulnerability to colds.