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Fight the Flu this Year with These 4 Flu-Fighting Items plus Flu Vaccine Advice for Pregnancy

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Fighting flu

According to Dr. Oz's special guest Stacia Woodcock Pharm. D., the best way to prevent getting the flu is by getting your yearly flu vaccine either through a needle in the arm or a spray in the nose as described recently in an article that discusses the top 4 flu questions Oz viewers have this flu season.

“When it comes to the flu, prevention is key. Everyone knows to wash their hands, to cover their mouth, but the number one thing people can do to prevent the flu is to get their flu shot,” says Ms. Woodcock.

To help viewers be prepared for this flu season, Dr. Oz recommends that everyone puts together a flu-fighting kit that consists of the 4 following flu-fighting items that he says will make your flu season less eventful if not flu-free.

Flu Fighter Kit Item #1: Alcohol-based hand sanitizer

“The first flu fighter in my kit for prevention is alcohol-based hand sanitizer or wipes,” says Dr. Oz who tells viewers that not just any hand sanitizer will do; rather, that you have to use a hand sanitizer that is labeled as being between 60% and 95% ethyl alcohol in order for it to do its job.

Ms. Woodcock adds that what makes an alcohol-based hand sanitizer so beneficial is that most people do not wash their hands with soap and water the entire 20-30 seconds recommended. With alcohol based hand sanitizer, however, you can sanitize your hands much quicker and more thoroughly by just applying it to your palms and rubbing for 5 seconds or until the sanitizer evaporates away.

Flu Fighter Kit Item #2: Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen

“Typically I would recommend ibuprofen,” says Ms. Woodcock, “not only is it a great fever reducer, but it also treats the body aches and pains that comes with the flu.”

However, for those who cannot take ibuprofen for reasons such as an allergy to the medicine, she recommends acetaminophen as a great second choice that works as a fever reducer as well.

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Flu Fighter Kit Item #3: Nasal Decongestant

“A stuffy nose is a miserable side effect of the flu,” says Ms. Woodcock who points out that choosing a nasal decongestant is a matter of looking at the box and matching your symptoms to those that the box says the decongestant is effective in treating. She tells viewers that you will not find a decongestant labeled as “for the flu,” only that it will state “effective for treating” symptoms X, Y, and Z.

Flu Fighter Kit Item #4: Chicken Soup

Chicken soup is not just for treating the cold, but is also equally effective in treating symptoms of the flu states Ms. Woodcock. She tells viewers that the health benefit of eating chicken soup when sick is not just an old wives’ tale, but that research has actually shown that chicken soup has an anti-inflammatory effect on a body that is inflamed from the flu. Furthermore, she adds that chicken soup also works wonders by helping to decrease congestion in the chest by loosening and thinning the mucous buildup that occurs with the flu.

Flu Vaccine Advice for Pregnancy

When asked by a pregnant Oz viewer who is due to deliver twins soon about whether or not she should have a flu shot this flu season, Ms. Woodcock explains that she should definitely get the flu shot to protect herself and her unborn twins.

“Pregnant women are often really afraid to get the flu shot. Not only is it [a flu shot during pregnancy] recommended, but you are considered to be a high risk patient who absolutely without question should get the vaccine. When you are pregnant, your heart, your lungs and your immune system all function at a lower level. So if you were to get the flu, not only would it put you at risk, but it would put your baby at risk as well,” says Ms. Woodcock.

Ms. Woodcock states that pregnant women are not a candidate for getting the non-needle spray type flu vaccine because it contains live (but weakened) flu virus in it. Her recommendation for pregnant women is to get the needle injectable flu vaccine that is available preservative-free to ensure the safety of her pregnancy.

For an informative article about how to prevent the flu and cold viruses naturally, click-on the titled link, “Avoid the Cold & Flu This Winter with Dr. Oz's 4 Natural Immunity Boosting Solutions.”

Image Source: Courtesy of PhotoBucket

Reference: The Dr. Oz Show