As the temperatures dip, cold and flu season begins. While most drivers do their best to stay healthy, falling ill on occasion is usually unavoidable. However, that doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself to feeling miserable. 

Instead, there are things you can do to put yourself on the path to recovery. If you want to make overcoming a winter sickness as easy as possible, here are some tips that can help you get past a cold or the flu quickly. 

Know What You Have

Many illnesses have symptoms in common, making it hard to figure out the best treatment options and approaches. As a result, taking a minute to consider what you might actually have isn’t a bad idea. 

First, if you’re experiencing any cold or flu-like symptoms, get a COVID test even if you are only a little ill. COVID-19 symptoms vary from one person to the next, so even mild symptoms could be a sign that you’ve contracted it. Essentially, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Plus, since the tests are still being offered for free, there’s no reason not to check. 

If you’re COVID-negative, then how your symptoms came about may help you determine if it’s a cold or the flu. Flu symptoms tend to come on quickly, and they are usually more severe than cold symptoms. You may also experience more body aches and a higher fever. 

Additionally, runny or stuffy noses are usually associated with colds, along with sneezing, so that may help you determine which illness you’ve contracted. Sore throats are also more common with colds. 

Once you know, you can determine what treatment approach is best. There are many OTC medications available, so speak with a pharmacist to see which is ideal for your situation. Plus, there are prescription flu options that can shorten the duration of the virus, so you may want to see your doctor if you suspect the flu. 

Hydrate and Nourish Your Body

While being ill may make eating and drinking less appealing, both are necessities. Make sure you stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Hot tea can also be a great choice, especially varieties that are designed to soothe sore throats and quell stomach distress. 

When it’s time to eat, turn to chicken noodle soup. The cysteine found in chicken noodle soup might help you recover faster. Plus, you’ll be getting a warm liquid along with protein and vegetables. Not only will that help you meet your nutritional needs, but it’s easy on the stomach, too. 

Get Enough Rest

When you’re sick, your body has to work hard to fight the virus. Make sure you set it up for success by getting enough rest. Along with relaxing during the day, dedicate extra time to sleep. That way, your body will have enough time to fight, repair, and recover. 

Stay Home If Needed

Often, rest is critical if you want to recover from a winter sickness quickly. Since being on the road can be stressful, driving might not help you heal. Additionally, both colds and flu can be distracting, increasing your odds of being unsafe while on the road. 

If you’re having trouble concentrating or are experiencing notable symptoms, stay home. Similarly, if there is a chance your illness is significant, working means exposing other people to a potentially dangerous virus, making calling in the better choice. 

Know When to Go to the Doctor

See a doctor immediately if you have an elevated fever that won’t break, shortness of breath, bloody mucus, or other signs of severe illness. Colds and cases of flu can be dangerous and, for some, may even turn fatal. 

Often, it’s better to seek out treatment if your symptoms are severe. That way, you can get a professional opinion before things get dangerous. 

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