The Flu & Everything You Need to Know

Oh the flu! Tis the season and man this season is taking over! Sickness is running rampant and there are few families left unscathed by it. This article is not about whether or not you should or shouldn’t get the flu shot. It is merely to educate about the reality of what the flu is, how to minimize exposure, and if you get it, ideas to shorten the length of the flu.

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The Flu Everything you need to know 

This year I rocked my husbands world when I told him that the flu is not throwing up and having diarrhea. Those symptoms are less common in the actual flu and can occur in kids. My husband has believed that the flu shot protected you against what many call the stomach flu or gastroenteritis. However, this is not the case. The flu is short for influenza which is a respiratory sickness with symptoms like a fever, chills, aches, fatigue, and a cough.  Here are some more facts about the flu.

FACTS ABOUT THE FLU

  • You can spread the virus BEFORE you start showing symptoms! Which means EVERYONE could potentially be infected and contagious without you them even knowing they are infected. 
  • Germs can linger in the air up to 30 minutes. Do you know what this means? You go to the supermarket and walk in an area after someone sneezed or coughed, you could potentially breathe those germs in.
  • Standing 3 feet or 6 feet away from someone with the flu doesn’t make any difference. If you are in the same room you run the risk of getting the flu. Speaking and breathing is enough to send germs into the air.
  • During the winter time when the air is dryer, the virus will hang out in the air longer. 

Now having said all of this…Can you completely avoid the flu??? If you want to live a life, no you can’t! You can however take some precautions and strengthen your immune system. 

TIPS TO PREVENT GETTING THE FLU

  1. First off make sure you get PLENTY OF SLEEP! Sleep is a huge factor, especially with your kids, in keeping a strong immune system. 
  2. Another big thing that will help keep a strong immune system is to STAY AWAY FROM SUGAR! Seriously! Sugar decreases your immune system up to 5 hours after consuming sugar. According to this article, your white blood cells are 40% less effective at killing germs! That is huge people! 
  3. Don’t touch doors with your hands if at all possible. Use your arm and push your way through. Yes I am that woman who opens a door with her elbow, or uses a paper towel. 
  4.  If you use an elevator, ALWAYS wash your hands. That place is very small and enclosed leaving it a perfect place for germs to hang out in the air and on surfaces.
  5. If you go to a public areas such as the store, doctors, or work always SANITIZE!! I was just introduced to this 24 hour hand sanitizer and is supposed to kill germs upon contact with your hands for 24 hours. Here is another type you could have on hand as well (HA HA no pun intended).
  6. Every time you walk in your home from running errands, WASH YOUR HANDS!!! Keep the germs out of your house as much as possible. 
  7. Teach your kids to sneeze and cough into their elbow! A little bit of education goes a long way!!
  8. One thing that I have found to help is to rub ON GUARD, which is an essential oil, on my children’s feet every night during cold and flu season. There are also ON GAURD beadlets that are convenient as well to take daily. I have found a decrease in sickness in my home when I do this, and it also shortens the duration if they do get sick. 
  9. Get an Essential oil diffuser and diffuse oils into your home to add an extra level of protection.  
  10. I have also recently learned of ELDERBERRY SYRUP which you can give your kids daily to strengthen their immune system.

TIPS TO SHORTEN THE DURATION OF THE FLU

I am a strong believer in medicine, but I am also a strong believer in natural remedies. I believe each has their place in life and there should be a balance. Having said that, I don’t go to the doctor unless I am out of ideas on how to care for my child. I have not been to the doctor for my kids in years, and am so grateful for this. Here are some tips that I have found to help shorten the duration of the flu. 

  1. DRINK LOTS OF FLUIDS! You want to flush your body out! Try and stay away from sugary drinks. I like using water with some lemon squeezed into it or drinks with low sugar. 
  2. Get plenty of rest. 
  3. Here is a medication that naturally works with your body to help relieve flu symptoms. You can give it to your kids, ages 2 and up, as well. 
  4. Use On Guard every 3 hours, whether its rubbing the oil on feet, or taking the beadlets that dissolve in your mouth. This really does help and is one of my favorite ways that I have found to help my children feel better, faster. 

Now as you can see, you can get the flu from just about anywhere in public. My request to you is to be kind. Let’s not judge and point fingers on how or where your child got sick from. It could have been from someone who hasn’t even started showing symptoms yet, which potentially could be sooooo many people! 

As a mother trust your instincts about your sick child. Don’t hesitate to call your doctor with any concerns you have! Be confident in your ability to care for your child. Good luck! 

Here is an article that might be helpful for you on 10 items every mom needs to care for sick children.

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