Resist the urge. Little habits -- touching eyes, putting finger to nose, biting nails -- give the flu virus a welcome mat into your system. A day or two later, when the first signs of flu hit you, you'll wonder -- how did I get the flu? When avoiding the flu, you've got to resist those habits.
"These are bad habits for many people," says Robert Schwartz, MD, chairman of family medicine at the University of Miami School of Medicine. "But they are the main way a virus gets into your system, via the...
When you’re shopping for an over-the-counter (OTC) medication, check the label. Look for a product that’s decongestant-free or made just for people with high blood pressure. Decongestants can raise your blood pressure and interfere with other medications.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before you try any OTC treatment. Make sure you tell each of your doctors about all of the medicines you're taking -- prescription and over the counter.
Try to Stay Well
Get a flu shot. The CDC says the best time to do it is as soon as the shot becomes available in the fall. If you miss it then, you can get it in January or even later. Flu season can begin as early as October and last through May -- but the earlier in the season you get vaccinated, the better.
Ask for the flu shot, not FluMist. People with heart disease shouldn’t receive the live vaccine that’s given as a nasal spray in FluMist.
You can take other steps to stay well, too. Keep your hands clean to help prevent the flu. Thorough washing is vital to keep germs off your hands, so you don't bring them into your body through your mouth, nose, or eyes.