Cold and Flu
With this years Cold and Flu season set to be more confusing than ever, we're here to get you prepared.
COVID-19 didn’t wind up disappearing over the summer like we’d hoped—far from it. But even though the coronavirus doesn’t seem to be seasonal, plenty of other communicable diseases are. Colds and Flu make the rounds every winter, and this winter they’re going to be circulating alongside COVID.
Recognise that colds, flu, and COVID may look similar
Colds and the flu are already very similar ailments. Often the flu will feel more severe than a cold, but that’s not a hard and fast rule. In a typical winter, at least one strain of flu virus is going around, plus many cold viruses. Viruses that cause colds include rhinovirus, adenovirus and four other types of human coronavirus.
Any of these can cause fevers and respiratory symptoms like coughing and sniffling. Telling the difference between colds and the flu is tough enough in typical years; now we add the possibility of COVID-19 into the mix.
In any case, don’t assume. Testing will be important to tell the difference between COVID and other respiratory infections. If you think you have a cold, flu or COVID, book an appointment with Vala for advice.
Enter the cold and flu season with confidence
We've created an exclusive winter package to support you when you get a cold, but need to know if it's Flu or COVID-19.
When you sign yourself, an elderly relative, or a vulnerable friend up to our yearly subscription package, we'll arm you with;
- A full course of Flu Treatment delivered to your address via our partner pharmacy Signature Pharmacy.
- An at home COVID-19 home-test sent from our lab partner.
- Unlimited appointments with our team to help diagnose and guide you to either take the Flu Treatment or the PCR test.
- Ongoing support while you or your dependent are sick, via our online video consultation platform.
Because we're Vala, and because you get unlimited appointments, even if you just feel a bit "yuk" and want some support to start feeling a bit more bouncy, we're always here to guide you through.
Tips for getting through the flu
There isn't a miracle cure for the flu, but we can help you manage it. Try some of these tips if you are already suffering from the symptoms:
- Stay home and get plenty of rest - Mind your flu manners. On the first day you have symptoms, call your work or school and tell them you won’t be coming in for a few days. You're sick -- and very contagious! Take advantage of down time and give your body some much-needed rest. Curl up on the couch and spend some time reading, watching DVDs, or just cat-napping while your body battles the virus.
- Drink plenty of fluids - Make sure you get more liquids. It doesn’t all have to be water -- fruit juices, sports drinks, and broth-based soups (like chicken noodle soup) also count. They keep your respiratory system hydrated and help turn that nasty, thick mucus into a thin liquid you can cough up and spit out. That’s good -- if it builds up in your lungs it could lead to an infection.
- Take care of your cough - Over-the-counter treatments can calm your hack. Try an expectorant, which turns mucus into liquid so you can cough it up. Don’t give over-the-counter cough or cold medicine to children under 4.
- Sit in a steamy bathroom - If you’re still stuffed up, sit in the bathroom with the door closed. Let the shower run hot until the room fills with moist steam. Sit away from the water to avoid burns.
- Run the humidifier - If the air in your house is dry, a mist humidifier or vaporizer can moisten it to help ease congestion and coughs. Don’t use a warm mist because it can promote the growth of bacteria and molds. Also make sure to keep the device clean to prevent mold development.
- Try a lozenge - Sucking on soothing lozenges will moisten and coat a scratchy throat. It may quiet your cough, too.
- Get salty - Saline nose drops or sprays are available over-the-counter at any drug or grocery store. They work, they’re safe -- even for kids. Put several drops into one nostril, and gently blow the mucus and saline out. Repeat the process on the other side until both are unblocked.
- Ask us for an antiviral - You take these drugs as soon as symptoms start. They can lessen and shorten the flu. Speak to one of our doctors if you have signs of the flu and are at a higher risk for complications. That includes people who are 65 and older or those younger than 2 years of age.
- Don’t bother to ask for antibiotics - They only work against infections caused by bacteria. The flu is a viral infection.
Flu Treatment is an antiviral drug used for the prevention and treatment of the influenza virus.
Flu Treatment is the brand name of the drug. The active ingredient is called oseltamivir.
How does Flu Treatment work?
Influenza (flu) is caused by infection with the influenza virus. Flu Treatment works by stopping the influenza virus from reproducing. It does this by blocking the effect of neuroaminidase enzymes, which are present in the viral cell wall.
Antibiotics are only effective against bacterial infections. To treat viral infections such as flu, an antiviral medication is needed.
What is a Flu Treatment used for?
Our Flu Medication is licensed as a treatment for flu, and also for anyone who has been in contact with flu, to reduce the likelihood of them developing the infection.
Flu Treatment is not an alternative to have a flu jab (vaccine). If you are at risk, flu jabs are highly recommended.
How do you take Flu Treatment?
Each Flu Treatment capsule contains 75mg of oseltamivir. The recommended doses for adults weighing 40kg and over are below.
- To treat influenza - the adult dose is one 75mg capsule twice a day, for 5 days. It should be started within 2 days of onset of symptoms for best results.
- To prevent an attack of flu - the adult dose is one 75mg capsule per day, for 10 days.
- Swallow the Flu Treatment capsule whole – do not break it or crush it.
- Flu Treatment can be taken with or without food - taking it with food can reduce the chance of feeling or being sick.
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