Flu Pandemic

Natural Flu Treatment

A Brief Introduction to Influenza

Influenza or Flu, as it is commonly known is an extremely communicable respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. The virus makes an entry to human body through mucus membranes in the mouth, eyes or nose. The disease spreads to a non infected host (human) from an infected person through air while the infected person sneezes. The influenza virus is generally high up during the course of winter and fall. It is interesting to note that this time of year has also been named ‘Flu Season’. Flu is characterized by symptoms that include headache, fever, muscle aches, dry cough, fatigue and running nose which is found more in children compared to adults.

How to treat Influenza?

Though influenza might seem to be a disease of uncomplicated nature, if not treated properly it leads to difficulties that might have direct bearing upon the quality of one’s health. Hence it is highly recommended that flu is treated immediately after diagnosis by adopting a suitable method.

Two most important methods of treating Flu are:
1. Antiviral
2. Over the Counter Treatments (OTCs)

The two methods are discussed in detail to keep you informed of various aspects of each method.

How Antivirals would help in flu treatment?

Antivirals are drugs that effectively attack the influenza virus in your body, thereby preventing the virus from multiplication. The effectiveness of Antivirals is at its peak only when administered with 12-48 hours of the onset of influenza symptoms.

Antivirals help in:

Types of Antivirals

The four types of Antivirals approved by Food and Drug administration of U.S. for prevention and/or treatment of flu are:
1. Zanavimir (Relenza)
2. Amantidine (Symmetrel)
3. Oseltavimir (Tamiflu)
4. Rimantadine (Flumadine)

Antivirals are effective in treating kids as young as 1 year also.

Antivirals as a step towards prevention

Antivirals not only contribute towards natural flu treatment but also help in preventing virus attacks. If your family member is infected with flu then it is advisable for you to take a shot of antivirus as a precautionary measure. This has to be done with the physician’s consultation. Also it is important to discuss with your doctor if Antivirals are suitable for you, in case you have an allergy towards eggs or if you’re pregnant.

Natural Flu Treatment with OTCs

Over the counter treatments or medicines are drugs that can be purchased from a pharmacy without the physician’s prescription. This is usually taken to relieve oneself from discomforts caused by flu such as muscle pains, running nose and cough. Natural flu treatment with OTCs is less efficient than treatment with antivirals.

Most commonly used OTS medicines are:
1. Decongestants that reduce nasal congestions
2. Cough Suppressants are effective against dry coughs where production of mucus is absent
3. Expectorants that help in thinning the mucus so that mucus can be coughed up with ease.
4. Analgesic that help in relieving pains and reduce the intensity of fever.
5. Antihistamines that effectively battle against watery eyes and running nose.

It is noteworthy that some OTCs have side effects that might cause various health complications hence it is better to have a thorough knowledge of the drug taken by you.

Say no to Antibiotics

A lot of people are under a misconception that antibiotics can help in flu treatment. The entire purpose of using an antibiotic is different. Antibiotics are drugs that destroy bacteria. Since flu is a viral infection, inappropriate use of antibiotics in flu treatment can lead to antibiotic resistance which is a breeding health concern.

Prevention is any day better than cure

By implementing few healthy hygienic habits you can reduce the chances of attracting influenza virus. Flu often spreads when an infected person shakes hands with a non infected person. This can be avoided by using a tissue while sneezing or coughing and immediately disposing the tissue. Also by washing your hands at regular intervals coming into contact with germs can be avoided. This way everyone’s safety is taken care of.