How do I manage my swine flu on a daily basis?

The most important thing you can do to manage your swine flu (H1N1) is to rest and drink fluids. You should plan to rest for the duration of the fever, if you can. Try not to exert yourself too much too soon. You may want to take over the counter medications such as decongestants for the congestion and ibuprofen or acetaminophen for the fever, headache, sore throat, and body aches. If your doctor has prescribed any medication, make sure you take it as instructed. Be alert for signs that you are developing pneumonia, such as a severe cough, high fever, breathing problems, and pain when you take a breath. If you experience these symptoms you should see your doctor.

Experts say the best thing you can do for yourself if you come down with the flu (either H1N1 flu, sometimes called swine flu, or the seasonal flu) is to stay home and rest. However, they also warn that young children, people over the age of 65, pregnant women, and anyone with a chronic medical condition like asthma or diabetes should see a doctor if they develop flu symptoms. Most other people who are not at risk for complications from the flu can stay at home and take care of themselves. Here are some things you can do to keep others healthy and help yourself feel more comfortable:
  • Steer clear of family members and wash your hands often.
  • Drink water and other clear fluids to stay hydrated.
  • If you are over the age of 18, try over-the-counter cough medicine or fever-reducing medications (talk to a pediatrician about the best medications for children who have the flu).
  • Gargle with warm salt water to relieve sore throat pain.
  • Don't drink alcohol or smoke.
  • Call your doctor if you develop difficulty breathing, experience sudden dizziness or pain in your chest, are confused, have severe vomiting, or experience a return of your symptoms after getting better.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.