With the onset of H1N1 and many other flu viruses this season, the following advice is offered on how to prevent the catching and spreading of flu germs by Dr. Vinay Goyal who is an Internist and Thyroid specialist.
The only portals of entry are the nostrils and the mouth/throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it’s almost impossible not coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions.
While you are still healthy an not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps, not fully highlighted in most official communications, can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu).
- Frequent hand-washing
- “Hands off the face” approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of the face unless necessary. Especially the “T” zone-eyes, nose and throat.
- Gargle twice a day with warm salt water or Listerine. H1N1 takes two to three days after the initial infection in the throat/nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one. Don’t underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method.
- Similar to #3 above, “clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. Not everybody may be good at using a Netti Pot, but “blowing the nose hard” once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton swabs dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral infection.
- “Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C. If you have to supplement with vitamin C tablets, make sure that is also has zinc to boost absorption.”
- “Drink as much of warm liquids such as green tea or herbal tea as you can. “Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferation viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.
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