FLU 101

Are you one of the few people in the US who hasn’t had the flu yet? You might need some tips from the rest of us who have had it. Follow these, and perhaps your flu experience will be more pleasant and fulfilling!

  • For heaven’s sake, stock up on tissue. I find that the kind with the lotion is overrated. Your nose will get all chapped anyway. So:
  • Stock up on Vaseline. Actually, this is an understatement, because anyone who bought a jar of Vaseline in the last twenty years still has a lifetime supply in that jar. But if you don’t have any at home, get that one lifetime jar. Rubbing it on your nose and lips is soothing. I am not certain that it really heals anything, but when you are at death’s door, soothing is a good sensation.
  • Don’t be afraid to call your doctor’s office, or page your doctor at midnight. Remember, this is what he/she signed up for in med school. They are paid for this. Get the idea of “I don’t want to bother him/her” right out of your mind! My doc was great, and he told me to use both Nasacort and Afrin one right after the other. My nose really hurt, but he was right, clearing out my head did help slow down on the stuff running down my throat that made me cough my lungs out. I won’t use the “m-word.”
  • Go ahead. Moan around. You have earned this.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. I hate fluids.
  • On one of your repeated phone calls to your doc, be sure to get a narcotic cough syrup. This will be the only way you will be able to stop coughing long enough to sleep. And the pleasant buzz is just a nice little side benefit.
  • Plan on coughing for weeks.
  • Plan on complaining for weeks.
  • As long as you have symptoms, you are contagious. So this is another great benefit. It gets you out of stuff like grocery shopping, working, and going to the gym.
  • Facebook is a good indicator: when you no longer see posts from your friends about how horrible they feel, then maybe the worst of the pandemic is over. It might be safe to go out in a few days. Oh, and it also might be time to stop posting agonizing details about your own cough, how many days you have been wearing the same pajamas, and the last time you took a shower.

I am feeling much better now. I must admit though, that I am a little nostalgic for the good old days of my virus, when I called my doctor so often that it was kind of like having a new boyfriend…

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