NPS has developed some quick questions for people suffering from a cold or flu to help them seek advice from their health professional on how to treat their symptoms.
NPS clinical adviser Dr Philippa Binns says that with colds and flu abundant at this time of year, and with reported flu spikes in some parts of the country, it’s important people equip themselves with the information they need to manage the symptoms of their illness and help themselves feel better.
“A cold or flu can make us feel really sick so it’s no wonder that when we are suffering from one of these illnesses we want to do everything we can to make ourselves feel a little better,” says Dr Binns.
“Luckily there are a number of things you can do to treat the symptoms of your cold, such as using lozenges to soothe a sore throat, or inhaling steam from a hot shower to relieve congestion. However resting and being realistic about how quickly you will recover are also important.
“These questions may help you get the information you need from your doctor, pharmacist or other health professional to treat your symptoms effectively and send you on a path to recovery.”
Practicing good hygiene is an important step to help stop the spread and prevent you from catching colds and flu in the first place.
“Taking simple, practical steps to stop infections from spreading is important. This means staying home from work when you’re unwell, and practicing good hygiene by covering your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, throwing the tissue away in a rubbish bin, then washing your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water,” she says.
Top 5 questions to ask about your cough, cold or flu
1. How long will I take to get better, and when can I return to work/school?
2. How can I prevent my problem from spreading to others?
3. How can I relieve my symptoms?
4. Could any over-the-counter medicines help my condition?
5. When should I seek further help from a health professional?
For more information about managing the symptoms of a cold or flu http://www.nps.org.au/conditions