What to do about Freshers Flu

Whether it is freshers flu or just a general cold, getting ill whilst at university is ten times worse than getting ill at home, here’s why.

When you get ill at uni you are on your own, well unless you have a lovely flatmate who is willing to nurse you back to health. But the odds are after years of having somebody by your side, to fetch you more water and a wet flannel you are now on your own.

This carries a few more problems.

 Problem number one: If you are sick and don’t quite make it to the toilet, you have to clean that up yourself. Or leave it for your flatmates to wake up to in the morning which doesn’t always go down well.

 Problem number two:  You no longer have mum’s medicine cupboard so unless you were sent to university with a box full of remedies then you are pretty much screwed. Luckily with supermarkets and pharmacies nearby you can pick up the medicine you need, that is, if you can manage to pull yourself out of bed.

 Problem number three: The odds are your flat mates will stay well away so they don’t catch whatever it is that has pitched up tent inside you, therefore, unless you have somebody to phone or text who can put up with you, you will have nobody to moan to about how you are feeling. (If you have man flu I can imagine from past experience with family, moaning about it is one of the key stages to the flu)

avoid freshers flu

However, although it is inevitable that you will get freshers flu  at some point if you haven’t already, there are ways to delay it and get back to your usual self quickly. The main tips I got before coming to university were the following;

  1. Eat fruit and veg, along with taking vitamin C tablets. Speaking for myself, I know that I haven’t eaten nearly as much fruit and veg as I would have done if I was living at home still.  Advice from mother: Use onions in your cooking as they help to keep away colds.
  2. Use anti-bacteria hand gels. Yes it may seem a bit OCD but if it helps to stop spreading germs and can prevent those colds who cares?
  3. At the first sign of colds coming through get yourself some nasal sprays to help prevent it getting any worse.

Those are all tips I was given by family and my colleagues at Boots Pharmacy, but here are a few of my own tips and tricks.

  1. Although it is tempting don’t go out and drink. Your body is fighting against germs already it doesn’t need alcohol to add to the mix.
  2. Stay cuddled up in bed in warm, cosy clothes and try to sweat it out. It is always good to do movie/ tv marathons at this time whilst you have the excuse to stay in bed all day.
  3. Get a cup of tea/hot chocolate.  It is the cure of all cures. Rich tea biscuits help as well, especially if you can’t stomach anything.

Obviously if things get worse always go and see a doctor to make sure you haven’t got a chest infection. But remember home is just a phone call away and parents tend to have the answer as to which remedy to use 90% of the time.

The best things, in my opinion, to make sure you always have with you during cold and flu season are as follows;

Everything you need for freshers flu.
  1. Tissues, whether they be for yourself or to help somebody else out it is always good to have one or two small packs of tissues in the bottom of your bag.
  2. Soothers, Strepsils and any kind of throat sweets to help sooth that tickley cough because we all know how annoying it can get when somebody is coughing every ten seconds in a lecture.
  3. Water is something we should all carry with us, or a drink of some sort. The more you cough, the dryer your mouth and throat gets, and the more it becomes irritating. Save yourself from staring at the clock for your lecture to be over so you can get a drink and take one along.

We are already into October and freshers flu is spreading like wild fire on Preston campus, so stay wrapped up and protected from the germs circulating and you might just be the lucky one who doesn’t get freshers flu.

Got any cheap or easy remedies you want to share? Comment below or Tweet us at @UCLanPluto

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