A Spartan's Guide To Surviving Cold and Flu Season

Autumn may be the most wonderful time of the year, especially here at MSU(think pumpkin spice lattes and Michigan foliage!), but it also marks the start of cold & flu season. Olin Health Center reports that over 50% of MSU students had a cold or the flu last year. Lucky for you, HCMSU has some tips to get you through the next few months.
First of all, the best way to survive a cold is not to get one at all! Staying healthy in the first place is your best line of defense against colds and flu. Sarah Praschan, a freshman at MSU, says, “I exercise and consume a lot of Vitamin C. That’s literally all I do, and I generally don’t get the flu.” Make good use of the awesome recreational facilities here at State, or simply walk around campus and take in the sights. Plus, it’s not difficult to find healthy options in Sparty’s or the dining halls. Between salad bars, fresh fruit, stir-frys, and other dishes, getting proper nutrition is perfectly convenient.
However, sometimes eating well and exercising isn’t enough. That’s why it’s important to get vaccinated. Getting a flu shot greatly reduces your chances of getting sick. The CDC says that getting the flu vaccine is the best way to prevent the flu. Olin offers flu shot clinics in each of the neighborhoods as well as year-round vaccinations. The fee is $25, but many insurance plans cover your shot. A quick call to your provider ought to clear up any questions you may have about coverage. Call their appointment line for more information.
Once you’re already sick, there are a few things you can do to make yourself feel betterand prevent spreading the bug to your friends. Remember, your health comes first! Find some commitments that can be rescheduled and give yourself proper time to rest and recuperate. If you have to go to class, pick up one of the cold & flu comfort packs available around campus. They include everything you need like tissues, cough drops, Blistex and a handy single-use thermometer! If you feel extremely feverish, check your temperature. If it’s above 105 degrees, get to the hospital stat. Ibuprofen can help bring down a low-grade fever, and so can a wet cloth on the forehead. Obviously, taking medicine (decongestants, cough drops, cold medicine, etc) can make a world of difference. Make sure to keep track of what you take and when you can take another dose. Too many meds can be a lot more dangerous than a bout of the flu.
Keep well, Collegiettes! We’ll get through the season together!