Indiah Miller looks after little sister Georgia, who has contracted the winter flu.
Indiah Miller looks after little sister Georgia, who has contracted the winter flu. Blainey Woodham

Protect yourself this flu season

THE emergence of sniffles, coughing, aching and nausea heralded the annual flu season's arrival and many residents are clogging up doctor's waiting rooms around the Tweed to find some relief.

Doctor Hugh Deurnley from Tweed City Medical Centre said symptoms could include raised temperature, all over aching, depression and a tickling cough, usually caused by contact with infected individuals.

Dr Deurnly said when a person coughed particles could land on certain surfaces which, when touched by others, allowed minute harmful germs to be transferred to the mouth, leading to infection.

The trick to avoiding the flu was to keep one's hands clean, limit touching and "no kissing".

Resistance to the flu depends on your age and whether you had the disease in the past.

Older people are often more immune to the flu, although they do experience more difficulties getting rid of the disease.

Younger people are the opposite, and while they are infected more often because they haven't built up the required resistance, they also fight off infections easier.

Vaccinations and not smoking can also stave off infection but the best response to feeling ill was rest and some paracetamol.

"Lie down and call your mother," Dr Deurnley said.

Naturopath and nutritionist Olwen Anderson concurred with Dr Deurnley and said one of the most important things to do was rest.

"Rest is essential and one of the things a lot of people overlook," Ms Anderson said.

"Soldiering on may get you through the day or week but is no long term solution."

Apart from the all important time out, people should consume plenty of fresh vegetable juices as well as raw vegetables because they contain vital minerals and vitamins.

Some old flu remedies including lemon juice with honey in hot water and fresh ginger and honey in hot water are also worthwhile and people should keep up their intake of fresh fruits.

Sleep and avoiding becoming run down are most important and once people feel the onset of a cold or flu, they should leave work and get to bed as soon as possible.

Ms Anderson said people with the flu or a cold should check in with their naturopath and stock up on remedies which didn't react with their prescription medication.

Some natural remedies reacted adversely with prescription medicines and should therefore be avoided.



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