THE VISION BOARD

An Always Sick Student’s Guide To Surviving Flu Season

5 min read

Jun 27, 2019

We all have that one classmate or friend who’s somehow always sick. Or, maybe it’s you, and that’s why you’re reading this article. Hey, look at you (more like, ah-choo?), you came to a good source! Getting sick can be such a huge bummer and blocker when it comes to your studies. A runny nose and hoarse voice can ruin anyone’s perfect attendance streak. 

There’s that one time in the year when everyone seems to get the sneezes. So what can you do when your allergies just can’t help pollen in love with you? Here are all the health tips you students can take, ranging from easy everyday steps to what to keep in your emergency bag. Pass around the alcogel and antihistamines, please!

Watch and wash your hands

Quite the obvious, but not done enough. You touch your face around 15 times an hour, and in that time your hands probably come into contact with different germs and allergens. There’s a right way to wash, too. Around 20 seconds with a mild soap. Sing a quick jingle in your head. Like the “Happy Birthday” song. Twice.  

Disinfect everything (and everyone) you love

If you’re not carrying a bottle of hand sanitizer or alcohol with you, get on it now. And share it with your friends! Disinfect your space and stuff regularly. 

A study shows that we touch our phones, on average, 2,617 times a day. And you bring that baby everywhere you go—to the classroom, the toilet, the gym, your room, the dinner table… Swipe right to left on that screen with some alcohol. Don’t forget your phone case, the actual phone, and your earpods too.

Stick to the essential oils

On days when you wish your stuffy nose could just chill and stop bothering you, anything with menthol or eucalyptus is your savior. Have a menthol stick or eucalyptus oil or balm in your bag with you when you’re sick. Dab that under your nose, on your temples, and at the back of your ears.

Make your home your sanctuary. If you have a humidifier or diffuser, turn that on and splash in a few drops of eucalyptus and lavender essential oils before bed. You may not wake up fully healthy, but you’ll feel better. Plus, your room will have the aroma of a spa, provided you got your sense of smell back the next day.

You are what you eat—so be healthy

One reason you could be getting sick often is a lack of proper nutrients in your body. We get it though, sometimes when the school stress gets too much, it’s easier to go for food that’s quick and easy. But being healthy all starts with a proper diet, which ought to give your body the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals it needs on a daily basis. 

Start by limiting your sodium, fat, and sugar intake. Opt for lean meats and give fresh veggies a shot. Also, pay serious attention to the nutrition labels of everything you buy. And stay away from trans fat, you guys!

Sleep is, literally, life 

Poor sleep could be affecting your immune system. And when you’re sick, it needs to regenerate more than ever. In your sleep, the body produces a regenerating protein called cytokenes which helps fight infections. Now, if you’re sleep-deprived, your body won’t be able to produce as much of these protective proteins. That’s why it feels worse when you’re literally sick and tired.

So catch up on some Zs if you can. Take a regenerative nap. Be patient with yourself and your body.

Vitamin D (and C) are your best friends

Be that godsend friend who always carries a bottle of vitamin tablets in their bag. They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, and they weren’t kidding. Fruits are a great source of vitamins so get as much as you can. But lay low on the sugary juices—fresh is best. 

But while it’s common knowledge to get a lot of vitamin C when you’re sick, people often overlook vitamin D! You get that from fatty fish, mushrooms, soy milk, and eggs, but you could get supplements, too. Vitamin D deficiency is proven in a recent study to be linked to a weakened immune system. Also, with vitamin D, there’s a reduced risk of respiratory tract infection.

Seriously see a doctor. Your school clinic is free.

If you’re feeling flu-like symptoms like fever, chills, and/or intense fatigue, get thee to a medic immediately! Don’t wait until you feel super awful to see a doctor. Head to your clinic for help. While self-medicating and going online to look up your symptoms are way more convenient, sometimes the best treatment is one that comes from an official source. The physicians at your clinic or nearby hospital should be able to provide you with assistance and proper medication. 

Health is wealth, friends! Don’t overexert yourselves especially when you’re sick. Know your limits. Sometimes getting sick is the body’s way of telling you that you need to rest and regenerate. If you’re all about wellness, too, check out our Generation Zen section on the Edukasyon.ph blog!

 

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Written By:

Belle O. Mapa

As a child, Belle O. Mapa fell in love with books and fairytales. So she pursued a BFA in Creative Writing at the Ateneo de Manila University. Belle now lives out her passion: writing stories, hosting creative journaling workshops, and advocating for mental health awareness. You can find her chasing productivity tips on Edukasyon PH—or geeking out at your local craft store.

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Written By:

Belle O. Mapa

As a child, Belle O. Mapa fell in love with books and fairytales. So she pursued a BFA in Creative Writing at the Ateneo de Manila University. Belle now lives out her passion: writing stories, hosting creative journaling workshops, and advocating for mental health awareness. You can find her chasing productivity tips on Edukasyon PH—or geeking out at your local craft store.

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