In last week’s blog, we covered the basics of the flu, from signs and symptoms to tips to prevent the spread of the virus.
Today, as part two of our flu series, we want to discuss the various forms of treatment.
If you are taking care of an elderly loved one who is suffering from the flu, take note of the following ways to keep him or her comfortable and on the road to recovery.
- To reduce a fever, along with the aches and pains commonly associated with the flu, consider using pain relievers such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). But remember, before taking any additional medication, please consult with your loved one’s primary care physician to ensure there are no adverse interactions.
- Rest is best when dealing with the flu! Make sure that your ill family member gets adequate rest and does not overexert him- or herself.
- A cool, damp cloth on the forehead, arms and legs can help reduce the pain and discomfort that’s often associated with a fever.
- To help prevent dehydration, make sure that your loved one is drinking plenty of clear fluids like broth, water or sports drinks with electrolytes.
- Prepare light foods such as crackers or toast if he or she is able to eat. However, as mentioned before, fluids are more important than food, especially in the first days of the illness when the fever may be the highest.
- For temporary relief of a sore throat and coughing, throat lozenges, cough drops and cough medicine are all viable options. Speak with a doctor or pharmacist to determine which option is best.
- After caring for an ill loved one, always remember to wash your hands and wipe down household surfaces frequently to help prevent further spreading the virus.
If you or a family member is currently sick with the flu, keep these tips in mind to help treat the associated symptoms.
Consult an elderly patient’s primary care physician if his or her symptoms persist or worsen, or if you have any general questions regarding the flu.
Note: If you have yet to receive a flu shot this year, it’s not too late! Visit our medical center to get yours today. No appointment is necessary.