The catastrophe of dengue and chikungunya are not yet over and we have another virus to struggle with. It is the H1N1 virus (commonly called swine flu) that is trapping us these days. Till July 2017, nearly 12,460 people were affected by the H1N1 virus leading to 600 deaths in our country. In our state (Uttar Pradesh) alone, around 695 cases of swine flu have been reported till now this year. This certainly has created a panic amongst all of us! The virus though can be serious and is spreading fast, but, if controlled and managed on time by following certain precautions, it may help you to keep the disease at bay. Keeping that in mind, certain “do’s” and"don'ts" are enlisted below:
1. Maintain hand hygiene
Wash your hands more often than normal. Use soap and water to wash your hands together for about 15-20 seconds before and after every meal or snacks you eat; after every use of washroom; after returning back home from outside or after touching any object outside the home (at work or marketplace). Objects touched by hands are a potential source of the virus that may get passed on from one person to another. Sometimes the virus can spread through droplets that have remained on surfaces of things like laptops, phones etc. So, avoid using items of someone who is coughing or sneezing. Use sanitizers, when out at places where hand washing facility is not available and at crowded public places where flu viruses are constantly transmitted to objects touched by many.
2. Keep distance from affected people
Not that every patient who is coughing or sneezing carries swine flu virus but in general, it is always good to maintain some distance from those who are affected with any kind of flu. This is because viruses travel in air and you may get trapped with this airborne disease. The critical closeness of less than 6 to 10 feet is required to catch airborne viruses. Wear a face mask (the H-95 mask is recommended), if you have swine flu. This will contain the virus within and will not spread to others. For the rest of us, just focus on hand washing and avoid people who are visibly sick.
3. Watch out for symptoms & seek medical advice
Some people relate every infection with flu, but it is not true! There is actually a very specific cluster of symptoms to worry about. These are high fever, cough, muscle aches/headaches, runny nose, red eyes, nausea, vomiting and rashes all over the body. Seek advice from your doctor, if you observe these symptoms.
4. Sleep more, if not well. This helps in faster recovery.
5. Drink plenty of water and eat nutritious food to boost your immunity.
1. DO NOT self-medicate. Aspirin can cause a rare but serious condition in patients with the flu.
2. DO NOT rub your eyes, nose or mouth with your hands: Touching your face frequently is an easy way to transmit viruses to your body.
3. DO NOT go to crowded places. Stay at home if you fall prey to any kind of flu and avoid crowded places. This includes any place and gatherings including trains, buses, weddings etc. Avoid close contact with others for 7 days after your symptoms begin or until you have been symptom-free for 24 hours whichever is longer.
Role of Homoeopathy
Homoeopathy has a very important role to play in prevention as well as treatment of such epidemic conditions. Homoeopathic medicines are a powerful source with immune boosting properties and prophylactic action to stop the body’s cells from being infected by the virus.
“Swine flu (H1N1 virus) IS CURABLE. SO, DO NOT PANIC! A little more initiative in following certain habits by all of us may help curb its spread.”