Tips to Stay Healthy This Fall

Fall is here and with the change in weather comes the start of cold and flu season. The common cold and the flu both share some of the same symptoms that make it hard to tell which one you’re coming down with.

Both the flu and a cold are viral infections spread through coming in contact with germs from someone already infected. A cold and the flu both develop in stages where certain symptoms start to emerge as the infection develops in your body.

Common cold symptoms

The cold usually starts off with a sore throat which goes away within a day or two. A runny nose, congestion, a cough, and nasal symptoms appear by the fourth or fifth day of feeling under the weather. A runny nose will also start within the first few days and as the cold progresses, the mucus will become thicker and darker. While a fever isn’t common with a cold in adults, children will sometimes run a low to mild fever for a day or two.

Flu symptoms

Symptoms for the flu are much more severe than the symptoms of a cold. You can come down with the flu within a couple days of coming into contact with the virus. The symptoms usually come on quickly and are much more severe than the symptoms of a common cold. Within the first couple days of coming into contact with the virus, you will start to develop a sore throat, fever, headache, muscle aches and soreness, congestion, and a cough.

Most flu symptoms start to improve over the course of 2 – 5 days, but it is not uncommon for the flu to leave someone feeling run down for longer periods of time.

Is it a cold or the flu?

One of the best ways to determine if it’s a cold or the flu is to check your temperature. While the flu mimics a cold, the flu will also come with a fever above 100 degrees. You will also feel completely miserable and have body and muscle aches as well. The common cold rarely comes with a fever above 100 degrees and while you will be tired and a little run down, you will still have enough energy to go about your day.

Remember, a cold or the flu are spread through direct contact with surfaces where cold or flu germs have been spread. This happens through sneezing or coughing. Person-to-person transmission can also happen when someone touches their nose or mouth and then touches someone or something else.

Cold and flu germs can live up to 24 hours on any hard surface. Make sure you are washing your hands and not touching your mouth, eyes, and nose during cold and flu season. Not only will this keep germs from spreading, but it will help keep you healthy too!

How To Be Honest With Your Doctor

One of the keys to getting the most out of a doctor-patient relationship is to be honest with your doctor. However, nearly 30 percent of people have lied to their doctor. If you lie to your doctor, then you probably will not be able to get the best care. There are several things that people lie about, and these lies can be harmful.

Lie: I am Following a Healthy Diet

You have to be honest with your doctor about your diet. If you lie and say that you have a good diet and your lab work does not reflect that, then your doctor will know something is wrong. You may end up being prescribed more medication, which can be harmful. If you tell your doctor that your diet has not been the best, then they can help you make changes.


Lie: I Don’t Smoke Anymore

Ten percent of smokers have lied to their doctors and told them that they quit smoking. They stated that they did not want to be lectured by their doctors. However, if you are still a smoker, then your doctor needs to know this. If you lie, then you may not be able to get the right treatment for conditions like asthma and bronchitis. Smoking also increases your risk of developing heart disease, which is something that your doctor needs to know.


Lie: I am Taking all my Medications

Many people will either change their dosage or stop taking their medication without consulting with their doctor first. Lying to your doctor about your medication can be risky. Your doctor may prescribe you more medication, which can result in serious health problems.

Let your doctor know if you stopped taking the medication because of the side effects. You may be given another medication. Your doctor may also give you a different medication.


Lie: I Don’t Drink

Moderate alcohol consumption will likely not harm your health. However, if you are consuming more alcohol than you should, then you will need to tell your doctor that. Excessive alohol intake can raise your blood pressure and lower your blood sugar. Keep in mind that even if you do not drink every day, you can still be putting your health at risk. Frequent binge drinking can increase your risk of health problems. Furthermore, alcohol use can affect certain medications.