What you should do at the first symptoms of the flu

The flu, also called influenza, is a respiratory infection caused by A virus. Every year, millions of people they spread and suffer – usually – a mild sickness, which could become serious, especially for people over 65, newborns and patients with certain chronic diseases. Of course, we should not confuse it with the constipated.

The best way to avoid the flu is to get vaccinated every year as he explains Niket Sonpal, doctor New York digestive system specialist. But, even if the flu vaccine helps decrease the chances of getting it, it is still possible to get the virus, so be sure to take extra precautions.

Getting vaccinated is the best option to reduce the risk of getting it. Of course, the injection does not always work and could be suffered despite the puncture

If you have not given the injection (or yes, but you suffer from it), the key to minimizing the effects of this pathology is know the symptoms and know what treatments you can use to cure yourself as soon as possible.

How to know if you have it

Sonpal explains that the first signs of the flu may include fever, chills, cough, runny nose or stuffy nose, headaches, fatigue and vomiting or diarrhea (although the last two tend to occur more in children than in adults), pick up Healthy The Healthy ’. If you have one or more of these symptoms, you should check with your doctor to find out if you have the flu and follow the early treatment advice suggested by the specialist.

Wash your hands

If you start to feel that you may have a cold or the flu, wash them can reduce the risk of spreading the virus to other people. "This is an easy way to stop the spread of germs," ​​says Sonpal. In fact, a study published in 'Medicine' indicates that good hand hygiene significantly reduces the risk of contracting these pathologies.

Rest well

The doctor recommends that Stop exercising and physical exertion in general. "Trying to continue your routine will only dehydrate you and make the symptoms worse. Remember that there is no quick solution for the flu, and many people do not feel fully recovered for about three weeks," Sonpal adds.

Do not take antibiotics

"Antibiotics do not kill viruses", says the expert. "Although many people believe that their favorite medication will cure any disease they have, that is not the case," says the specialist.

It is advisable to take pain relievers such as ibuprofen, especially if you have a fever. It helps reduce symptoms and provides relief

If you get the flu inside the first 48 hours of infection, the doctor can prescribe Tamiflu, an antiviral medication that can shorten the life of the flu. However, according to Sonpal, in most patients only about one day of illness is saved.


What will relieve flu symptoms are over-the-counter pain relievers, like ibuprofen or acetaminophen, Especially if you have a fever. They can help reduce symptoms and provide relief for the flu. Sonpal stresses that they should be used as indicated by the leaflet, since taking the right dose is key to alleviating the pain related to the disease.

Sleep more

Sleep helps decrease the effects of the flu and it helps you recover faster. It's not just physical rest: giving the brain a moment of peace could help improve defenses, according to an animal study published in 'Brain, Behavior and Immunity'. The researchers found that a protein produced by this mass of nerve tissue during sleep helped speed recovery in mice with the flu.

Stay hydrated

He Water is always the best option to stay hydrated and help loosen the mucus, but any liquid without caffeine will work, notes Sonpal. But if you are tired of drinking water, the doctor recommends other moisturizing beverages typical of athletes, juices, broths or decaffeinated teas.

Don't drink coffee

Coffee with caffeine and tea with theine they can dehydrate you, explains Sonpal. This process can make your symptoms worse and the disease last longer. And although this probably doesn't need to be said, alcohol has the same effect: although it can be tempting, that heat won't help you feel better.

Reduce your social life

Stay home and spend work, school and all social events. The doctor recommends that you stay away from others during the at least 24 hours after the fever is gone.

Flu symptoms they can start between one and two days after the virus has entered the body, which means it could be spread to other people even before you realize you have it. This makes it even more crucial to reschedule events the moment you start feeling bad.