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The flu can knock you off your feet. But knowing how to pamper yourself can help you feel better faster.
The following symptoms pack a powerful punch but usually clear up within two weeks. If symptoms linger or worsen, call your doctor.
A fever between 102 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit that lasts three days
Muscle aches and pains
Other symptoms include a cough, stuffy nose, sore throat, and sneezing. Children may experience nausea and vomiting.
The best thing you can do when you have the flu is take good care of yourself. Try these comfort measures:
Eat well and drink lots of fluids, such as water, soup, and caffeine-free beverages.
Get plenty of rest.
Consider over-the-counter medications. For example, nasal decongestants can help unclog a stuffy nose, and antihistamines stop sneezing. Acetaminophen can tackle a fever and minor aches.
An annual flu shot can greatly lower your chance of getting the flu. And, if you get the flu despite vaccination, it's often a milder case.
There are typically two options for the flu vaccine: the traditional flu shot and a nasal spray. For the 2016-2017 flu season, the CDC has deemed the nasal spray ineffective. Your best bet is to get the traditional flu shot.
The CDC recommends an annual flu vaccine for all people ages 6 months and older.
These strategies also can help you dodge the flu:
Frequently wash your hands with warm, soapy water for at least 15 seconds.
Disinfect telephones, doorknobs, keyboards, and other items touched by people who have the flu.
Make sure that people with the flu blow their noses in disposable tissue and discard it right away.