Influenza, or flu as it’s more commonly known, is around all year. However, here in the U.K. from December onwards we start thinking about ‘seasonal flu’, so called because it is common in the winter months.
Main symptoms include a high temperature, feeling tired and achy, and a chesty cough. All of these things start suddenly. The symptoms may appear similar to a cold, but flu is a very different set of viruses. And symptoms are more severe and longer lasting. Speak to your GP if you are concerned.
Flu can leave you exhausted, especially when you are suffering from a chesty cough. It can interrupt your sleep so you wake feeling tired. However coughing is actually nature’s way of clearing your lungs. It helps to expel irritants and secretions and prevent infection.
How you catch flu
Droplets that travel in the air from a cough or a sneeze will contain the virus. And anyone who comes into contact from these droplets can catch the flu. This can happen from breathing in the droplets. It is also transmitted after touching surfaces that droplets have landed on and then touching your nose or mouth.
Prevention and treatment
An annual flu vaccine is available in the autumn, from the beginning of October to November. You can also help to prevent spreading the virus by washing your hands regularly, cleaning surfaces to rid them of germs, and by using a tissue to cough or sneeze into.
Expelling sticky mucus from your chest
Mucus clearance devices ‘shake’ the congestion in your chest. This effectively loosens it so that you can expel it. They complement regular medication because they have no side-effects or drug interactions. The Shaker devices by POWERbreathe are easy to use by both adults and children (under supervision). In fact regular use of the Shaker of between 5 to 15 minutes will produce benefits equivalent to that delivered by physiotherapy techniques.
Prepare yourself for flu season
Public Health England publish weekly national flu reports that reveal how seasonal flu circulates across the UK. But you can prepare yourself by managing your symptoms at home:
- Stay hydrated
- Keep warm
- Speak to your pharmacist about over the counter remedies for aches and pains
- Use your Shaker by POWERbreathe mucus clearance device for thinning and dislodging mucus so that you’re able to expel it