[Alexandra Jungeling | Contibuting Writer]
The dreaded freshers’ flu. Who knows where it comes from and how to avoid it? All students think about is making the most out of their freshers’ week and hope for the best when it comes to their health, but is that really the best way to look at things? Speaking to the pharmacist at the Health Centre on College Lane, she gave me some helpful advice to share.
Firstly, to avoid getting freshers’ flu, STAY HEALTHY, this means eat enough food at the right times each day, even if you don’t feel like it. KEEP HYDRATED, water, water, water! This is possibly the most important thing, and whatever you do, don’t replace meals with alcohol.
Getting enough sleep is also vital; trying to go through the week without sufficient rest will not help your immune system to combat anything. Washing your hands or using hand sanitiser after going to the toilet, before eating, and when you go out, can help keep freshers’ flu at bay, and it’s these simple little things that can make your week even better.
If you are unlucky enough to have followed these instructions, and have been unfortunate enough to catch the flu of freshers’, then the symptoms to look out for include: fever, sweats, aches and pains, a dry cough, sore throat, sneezing, headache and feeling nauseous.
Things to look out for and seek medical attention for are: a rash, stiff neck, a worsening headache, a dislike of bright lights, drowsiness, confusion, repeatedly vomiting, chest pains and coughing up blood.
The illness spreads, from person to person, by droplets when people cough and sneeze. Obviously, being in a new environment, with new people, in close proximity to one another, will greatly increase your chances of catching flu. So freshers is clearing the best time for these lovely little droplets to find their way around. Ever heard the phrase catch it, bin it, kill it? Do it.
A few coping strategies for this terrible ordeal include sleeping, eating, drinking water, paracetamol, and not talking. You should try not to let it affect your university workload, if at all possible.
Basically, to avoid the illness that haunts the dreams of freshers be fit and healthy, sleep well, and don’t drink alcohol. (Well 3 out of 4 isn’t too bad!)
Do you have a top flu remedy? Share it with us in the comments below!