So cold and flu season is upon us, my friends! It’s not the happiest subject to write about, but I must admit, I think I’m more aware of it this time around. Each year, the weather changes and here in Los Angeles we seem to be going back and forth between “It’s sooo hot” to “It’s soooo cold”. Now I can’t completely say I’m used to this weather yet, only being here for a little over a year. In Chicago, where I’m from, we knew what to expect. We knew that it would be cold come September and we’d start hitting up the local Burlington Coat Factory for snowsuits. That’s not so much the case here. It’s still weird to me how it’s 88 degrees when I go to pick up my daughter from school in the afternoon, then 58 at night.
This year, I’m prepared, you guys! I refuse to get sick in any way! I have three children – one in school – and I cannot afford to be sick. Here’s how I’m keeping from getting the sickies:
Zicam and Cold-Eeze
Okay, perhaps you shouldn’t take both, just one or the other. These are homeopathic medicines that should be taken the first moment you feel a cold coming on. I prefer Cold-Eeze just because it doesn’t taste as bad, whereas with Zicam, not only does it taste funny, but you can’t drink fruit juice or water for a little while after. Also, Vitamin C drops, which are usually yummy, help to fight off a cold! You can get all of these things at a CVS pharmacy or a Rite-Aid and they aren’t too expensive. Remember, there’s no cure for the common cold (or so they tell us), so the best thing we can do is shorten it and the symptoms. And there are so many over-the-counter products that you can try, including throat sprays, lozenges and medicines that help lessen the symptoms.
I’m not a full-on germaphobe. If I was, I’m sure my house would be a lot neater. I do, however, have a child in first grade and you know how little kids are (no offense to any little kids reading this). They sneeze without covering their mouths, they wipe their noses with their hand then touch surfaces and some think it’s funny to lick one another (not my daughters, thank God!). I wash my hands even when I haven’t been handling yucky stuff because you never know what all is yucky!
If you’re in Target shopping, who knows who handled all of the stuff you just touched? Just wash your hands. Often. Now if someone sneezes on you in public, that’s a different thing. Most importantly, make your kids wash their hands! Even if they complain! Because there’s a good chance they’ll be the one bringing the germs into the house (again, no offense to children who may be reading this).
I’ve always been on the fence about flu shots, about whether they’re necessary, but I also rarely get the flu. I perhaps haven’t had the flu since I was a child. I’ve had pretty bad colds, but none of them have completely knocked me out to a point where I needed to be off of my feet for a while. And now that I’ve pointed out that I haven’t had the flu in years, I’ll probably get the flu. Perhaps I should reconsider the flu shot?
Plenty of Sleep
It’s hard to get plenty of sleep when you’re a grown-up. I sometimes see my kids going to bed at 8 o’clock and question why I’m not also. I guess I could and just forgo watching new episodes of EVERY SITCOM after the husband gets home. They’ll be on the DVR tomorrow, right? The moment I start feeling sick, I know it’s time to go to bed early because lack of sleep makes your resistance low. Lowered resistance means you’ll get sick and it’ll last longer. Besides, sometimes it’s nice to just go to bed early, even if you’re not feeling sick. And then maybe the husband will feel sorry for you and load the dishwasher himself!
And if all of this fails, and you end up sick anyway, just remember to drink plenty of fluids. A doctor in an emergency room once told me that people stay sick longer a lot of the time because they become dehydrated. You can also get sick from dehydration. Drink plenty of fluids, party people!