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Tips to fend off colds and flu as cases rise

Parents are being warned to be vigilant in monitoring their families’ cold and flu symptoms as serious cases of Influenza B skyrocket.

It’s also vital to rule out pneumonia as the condition can be fatal if left untreated, particularly in young children.

Knowing what to do and when to intervene can be tricky for parents, especially in the winter months, when colds and viruses are all too common.

But although Spring is approaching, a recent survey has shown many families are still being impacted by winter bugs, estimated that more than 1 in 10 Australians will suffer a cold or flu this month alone.

The Annual Global Cold and Flu Survey, conducted by Vicks, also suggests that a third of us remain unsure on how to best treat our family’s cold and flu symptoms, with more than a quarter  relying on treatments our mother or family used when we were little.

Indeed after medical professionals, our own mums remain our go-to for advice on treating cold and flu (18%).

The research also highlighted the negative effects of cold and flu on families with just over half saying that family outings have been impacted, and a third have had to take time off work.

Managing cold and flu symptoms, particularly in babies and children is difficult, and can be a bit scary.

If you’re unsure or symptoms increase, it’s important to seek medical advice.

In the meantime, here are some tips from Vicks to help keep the bugs at bay.

Prevention is better than cure!

  • Reduce the spread of cold and flu germs at home by using anti-bacterial wipes on high-touch areas such as mobile phones and remote controls
  • Carry a bottle of hand sanitiser in your nappy bag or pocket for cleaner hands anytime, anywhere.
  • When drying your hands, use paper hand towels to help stop the spread of germs further.

Boost your families’ immune system, making it more difficult for cold viruses to strike. This is especially relevant for pregnant women and new mums, who may be even more susceptible to colds and flu.

  • Try to get as much sleep as you can – a difficult ask when you’re pregnant or have small children! Sleep or rest whenever you get the chance so your body has a chance to repair and recharge.
  • Eating lots of healthy fruits and vegetables is another great way to improve your immunity.

If a cold or flu does strike – make sure you have your trusted remedies on hand! Pregnant women and babies aren’t able to consume cold and flu tablets so try to find some helpful alternatives.

  • Try mixing a bowl of warm water with Vicks VapoRub to relieve a stuffy nose, or apply directly to your chest and back before bedtime.
  • For the little ones, a nice warm bath, or a massage with Vicks Baby Balsam, can help soothe and relax your baby on snuffy days.

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