CareNow® - December 05, 2014
by CareNow

It’s now December and we’re right in the middle of the holiday season! For many people though, winter is more known for the common cold, flu season and other illnesses that ruin our holiday fun. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of these perpetrators so you can catch them before you become bedridden.

The Common Cold

The common cold is the most rampant of them all. Although colds can strike at any time of the year, they peak during winter. Over 1 billion colds are reported each year in the United States. Symptoms vary depending on the strain. They usually include nasal congestion, scratchy throats and sneezing.

There’s no surefire way to combat the common cold, but plenty of rest and fluids, paired with decongestants and cough syrup, will definitely help.

The Notorious Flu

Everyone dreads catching the flu. It’s spread from person to person through coughs and sneezes. You’ve heard it a million times and you’ll hear it a million more: wash your hands! It’s one of the easiest ways to stop the flu from spreading.

The flu is caused by a virus that infects the lungs and airways. People with the flu experience some very unpleasant symptoms.

Flu symptoms include:

  • Sudden fever
  • Chills and shakes
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Muscle aches
  • Coughing
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

To treat the flu you should get plenty of rest, increase your fluid intake and use acetaminophen or ibuprofen to reduce fever and aches. It’s always wise to consult a healthcare professional to diagnose the flu and receive advice.

Norovirus a.k.a The Stomach Flu

The Norovirus is the most common stomach bug in the United States and it’s highly contagious. Besides being called the stomach flu, it is also referred to as the, “winter vomiting bug.” As you can imagine, vomiting and diarrhea are the two most common symptoms. Yes, it can be very unpleasant. The good news is though that it only lasts a couple days and then it’s over!

The elderly and children are especially at risk. Dehydration is a big problem for patients with the Norovirus. It’s very important to drink plenty of fluids and to stay hydrated in order to recover as quickly as possible.

Have a healthy holiday!

If you ever start to feel sick this winter, check into your local CareNow online. If you’re proactive, most winter illnesses can be mitigated and you can get back to spending time with your family through the holidays.