How to Survive Flu Season

It’s Friday night after a long week of problem sets, meetings and exams, and you are lying in bed and start to feel that awful, burning feeling creep into your throat. “I really hope my throat’s just dry,” you tell yourself before falling asleep. You wake up the next morning with an unpleasant pressure in your head, a nose dripping worse than a hose and the joints of your great grandma. You have gotten sick. Luckily, there’s some simple things you can keep in your room to make your sick experience slightly more comfortable.

Salt and warm water. 

For that burning sensation in your throat, try gargling warm salt water. It sounds gross but it really helps to pull all that gunk out of your throat. Mix about half of a teaspoon of salt with 1 cup of warm water. Gargle the mixture thoroughly and spit out in the sink. Your throat should feel some temporary soothed after a few swishes.

Vaporub. 

Vaporub has had a controversial history as some people claim that it does not cure their cold symptoms. I have used Vaporub in the past and I find it a great temporary relief to my cough (though, in no way is it a cure). Rub a thick layer of Vaporub around the neck and chest. The vapors released from the cream will enter through your nose and mouth when you breathe, helping to suppress coughs.

Humidifier. 

Humidifiers help to aid congestion by filling the room with moisture. It can also help with those inevitable chapped lips you might get during your cold. Some humidifiers allow you to add drops of essential oils which will make your room not only feel refreshing but smell refreshing too. Just be sure to clean your humidifier frequently as moisture can sometimes invite bacteria which may make you feel worse.

Over the counter pain relievers.

For those achy joints, try taking your average over the counter pain reliever. Consider taking Aleve, Motrin, or Tylenol at the proper dosage labeled on the box. Also be sure to check that the pain reliever you’re taking doesn’t interact with any other medications you may be taking for your sickness.

Soup. 

If you’re sick, you probably don’t want to run out to the cafeteria to grab food. You’d rather be comfortable in your room with a blanket. This is why canned soup or instant noodles are a great option to have in your dorm when you’re sick. Most of them are microwavable and only require a fork and a microwave. My favorite is this instant udon by Nongshim which you can buy on Amazon.