One, Two, You and the Flu

"Me" time helps you stay healthy as well as recover when you are ill. Take some time now and learn some simple ways to take care of you.

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Protecting you helps protect others around you

The first and most important thing you can do for you is get the flu shot! It is the single best way to protect you from the flu.

While it’s never too late for the flu shot, preferably, you should get yours a few weeks before flu season starts. The vaccine takes about two to three weeks to fully kick in.

Secondly, you should make sure you have a flu symptom kit. If you do get the flu, you probably won’t feel much like going out and getting the supplies you’ll need to take care of yourself properly.


You caught it! Now what?

You have woken up feeling awful – you have a headache, you feel chilled and when you take your temperature you have a fever (temperature of 38°C /100.4°F or higher). What should you do?

  1. Stay home from work or school. Typically, most people can return to work or school when they start to feel better. Remember, when you are sick, you can spread the infection to other people.
  2. Hop into bed! Once you have the flu, the best way to fight it is to get plenty of sleep. In fact, you should probably get more sleep than you think you need. Your body’s immune system works best while you sleep and the right amount of sleep will help you get better faster.
  3. If you need help, ask for it. You might have some things you need to get done. Maybe you need help with the kids, making dinner or simply want some company or support. Don’t be afraid to ask your friends for help.
  4. Take a long bath or shower. If you feel up to it, pampering yourself with a relaxing bath or shower can make you feel quite a bit better.

Treating your symptoms at home

If your symptoms are mild, you should be able to take of yourself at home.

Non-prescription decongestants, cough suppressants and pain relievers can offer some relief but they are not a cure. Talk to the Pharmacist at Walmart about which preparations will best help the symptoms you have. If you have any health conditions or take any medications, it is important to tell the Pharmacist at Walmart so a product that is safe for you can be chosen.


Other things you can do...

  • Get steamed! Steam can ease your congested and stuffy nose. Steam up the bathroom by turning the hot water on in the bath or shower and closing the bathroom door.
  • Gargling can help a sore throat. Fill a glass with warm water, add half-teaspoon of salt and gargle away. If you aren’t into gargling, throat lozenges can help.
  • Drink lots of fluids. This will keep you hydrated and will replace fluids lost from sweating.
    » e.g., water, milk, real fruit juices, herbal teas and/or broths.
  • Don’t forget your chicken soup. It really can help ease your symptoms.
  • Consider supplements. They won’t cure you but they might bolster your immune system and help you get better quicker. Ask the Pharmacist at Walmart about supplements that might be right for you.

If you're not starting to feel any better after 2-3 days, you should call your doctor’s office. Explain your symptoms and they’ll decide whether or not you need to see your doctor or go to the hospital.


When should you see a doctor?

You should contact your doctor if you think you have the flu and you

  • Are pregnant
  • Have a chronic medical condition (such as asthma, diabetes or heart disease)
  • Are immune-compromised (due to HIV/AIDS, cancer, transplant , etc)
  • Were improving but are now getting worse (your cough is worse and you have a fever)

You will probably need to be seen.

If you have any of the following symptoms you should seek emergency help right away.

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath (not due to nasal congestion)
  • Severe headache or neck stiffness or pain
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Dizziness or confusion
  • A lot of vomiting
  • Rash
  • Difficulty swallowing fluids
  • Blue or grey lips
  • Dehydration, not peeing (no urine)
  • Seizures

Important information

The Pharmacist at Walmart is always available to talk to you about how to prevent and treat the flu. If you want to know how to protect your family from the flu... Just ask!

This information should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your doctor. There may be variations in treatment that your physician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances. If you have questions about your symptoms, ask the Pharmacist at Walmart for more information, and/or contact your doctor.

The pharmacist at Walmart does not endorse or recommend any sponsor or their products or services.
Any representation, performance claim, warranty or guarantee in any materials herein is the sole responsibility of the sponsor that has prepared such materials and is not independently verified by Walmart.
This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.



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