How to beat the Freshers’ Flu

Freshers’ flu is something I had never heard about before coming to Uni, and my lack of preparation is exactly why the virus hit me like a hurricane when it did. My entire first month of uni was spent going through the motions like a zombie because of the flu. Here are the things I wish I’d done to nurse myself to health a lot quicker and maybe to avoid getting the flu altogether.

1. Get a flu shot

Not to spark a vac versus antivac argument, but the chances of getting hit by the flu are a lot less if you’ve already protected yourself. Keele Practice provides free yearly flu shots for all students enrolled with them and you could always get one from your family doctor as well. If you’re scared of injections, just remember the stinging pain of a needle is far briefer than the pain from days of sinus blockage, chest pains and much more.

2. Stock up with basic medicine

Always make sure you have something to alleviate flu symptoms when they show. Examples are paracetamol, Lemsip or any type of cough syrup. Just make sure to read instructions and if symptoms persist, consult a doctor. Overdosage of any of these substances can lead to more serious issues than you had before, so while it may seem like a quick fix, its not worth it.

3. Hydrate

This may seem like common knowledge, but its very easy to get carried away in all the hustle and bustle of settling into uni and forget something as simple as drinking water. Its important to always carry a bottle of water with you, refill at every opportunity. Staying hydrated is a proven way to keep illness at bay.

4. Eat healthily

It is very easy to slip into bad eating habits after leaving home. Busy class, work and social life may make it difficult to make time for healthy meal preparation. But to beat Fresher’s flu, simple adjustments like swapping a packet of sweets for a bowl of grapes or fruit juice instead of a sugary energy drink can be all it takes to make sure you’re clear of the flu.

5. Hand sanitiser is your best friend

Public spaces leave us vulnerable to illnesses. Buses, train stations, railings on stairwells; all magnets for disease. Therefore, it’s important to have a small bottle of hand sanitiser with you wherever you go to limit the chance of spreading germs all over your body, especially contact with the face. Remembering these tips are sure to help you avoid the infamous Fresher’s flu so you can make the most of your university experience.

Concourse is Keele University’s independent student-run publication and has a long history of promoting student journalism. Having been established in 1964, Concourse has become an important part of the university and has been read by generations of Keelites.

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