R.A. the Rugged Man - Still Get Through The Day ft. Eamon

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How to Make It Through the Day when You're Sick

Two Parts:

Suffering from illness including the flu and colds or diarrhea can make it difficult to get through any day. No matter if you have to go to work or school, or even just stay home, you may feel miserable and not know how to make yourself feel better. By relieving symptoms and taking it easy, you can make it through the day with any sickness and may help yourself heal more quickly.


Soothing Yourself

  1. Take a warm shower or bath.Warm or hot water can be very helpful for relieving many symptoms of sickness. It can loosen mucus in the nose, clear the head, relieve congestion and soothe tense muscles.
    • Your bath or shower water should be between 36 and 40°C (or 95 to 105°F) to minimize the risk of burning your skin. Check the temperature with a thermometer or simply adjust the temperature on your water heater.
    • Breathe in the steam from the water.
    • Add Epsom salts or an aromatherapy oil such as eucalyptus or peppermint to the water. Either product can have a sedative effect and also open up stuffed nasal passages and your head.
    • Consider keeping a humidifier near you to help keep your head clear of congestion throughout the day.
  2. Gargle with saltwater.Rinsing your throat with saltwater can relieve a sore and scratchy throat.This remedy can relieve inflammation and may make it easier to swallow and talk.
    • Mix 1/2 a teaspoon of salt into an 8-oz glass of warm water to make saltwater.
    • Rinse with a mouthful of the solution for 30 seconds. You can do this as often as necessary.
  3. Reduce your workload.You may not have any choice but to go to work or school, or even just stay home. Reducing your workload by eliminating strenuous tasks can help you get much needed rest as well as relieving symptoms such as pain and discomfort.
    • Take it easy wherever you can. For example, try and reschedule meetings or don’t participate in gym class. If you work at home, leave strenuous work such as the laundry or cleaning until you feel better.
    • Decreasing and shifting your workload can be especially important if you are taking medications that make you foggy or drowsy.
    • Stay away from exercise until you feel better. This may give you enough energy to get through the day.
  4. Call in sick.If you are feeling too sick to get through your day, call in sick to work or school. This may help you feel better more quickly while minimizing the risk that you spread any illness to colleagues.
    • Be honest with your superiors about why you are not coming. For example, “I’m suffering from terrible congestion and a very bad headache. It makes it difficult to concentrate.”
    • This is a good option if you work at a job such as construction where you cannot do less strenuous activity until you feel better.
    • If you work with children, the elderly, or people with weakened or compromised immune systems, or if you work with food, you absolutely shouldnotgo to work when sick.
  5. Hydrate properly.Ensuring that you are properly hydrated can replace fluids you lose as a result of being sick.This may help relieve your symptoms so that you feel well enough to push through the day.
    • Drink at least nine cups of water for proper hydration if you are a woman and 13 cups if you are a man.
    • Drink clear liquids such as water, juice, clear broth, or non-caffeinated soft drinks.
    • Steer clear of caffeinated beverages such as coffee, black teas, and soft drinks. They could dehydrate you and exacerbate your symptoms.
  6. Consume chicken soup.Several studies have shown eating chicken soup can relieve the symptoms of a cold or other illness.Having some chicken soup can help keep you hydrated as well as minimizing your symptoms.There are many options for chicken soups including tasty chicken noodle soup.
    • Chicken soup possesses anti-inflammatory properties. It can also help increase the movement of mucus through the nose, which can alleviate congestion and other symptoms.
  7. Eat the BRAT diet.The BRAT diet, which stands for bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast is low in fiber and easy to digest. It can help ease an upset stomach and replace nutrients.
    • You can also eat crackers, boiled potatoes, and gelatin to help soothe an upset stomach.
    • Add more complex foods such as cereal, fruits, and vegetables once you are able to keep down BRAT foods and chicken soup.
    • Be gentle on your stomach, especially if you’re nauseous, vomiting, or have diarrhea. Dairy, fatty or fried foods, or spicy dishes may exacerbate your symptoms.
  8. Steer clear of alcohol, cigarettes, and caffeine.Alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco products can exacerbate the symptoms of a cold. Avoiding these products while you are sick may make you feel better and reduce the duration of your symptoms.
  9. Rest as much as possible.Ensuring that you’re getting sufficient rest is an important part of feeling well enough to get through your day. You can take naps or even just sit quietly to give your body rest.
    • Take naps during the day and get at least 8 hours of sleep a night. Both an make it much easier to get through the day if you’re sick.
    • Sleep in a space that is comfortable, warm, and slightly humid.
    • Use a vaporizer or cool-mist humidifier keep the air moist and help alleviate congestion and coughing.
    • Allow a fan to circulate air. You can also open a window if it is not cold outside.
  10. See your doctor.If your symptoms persist and resting doesn’t make you able to function through the day, schedule an appointment with the doctor. She can treat your symptoms and may give you medication that can help you function enough to make it through any day.

Taking Medications

  1. Soothe your throat with oral analgesics.Throat lozenges or sprays generally contain mild analgesics and other elements such as eucalyptus or camphor. These products can not only alleviate throat pain and inflammation, but may also relieve congestion.
    • Use oral analgesics every two to three hours.
    • Don't try to chew or swallow analgesic lozenges. This may numb your throat and cause further difficulty swallowing.
  2. Inhale nasal drops.Nasal and head congestion can make you feel particularly miserable, especially if you have to get through a class or meeting. Using nasal drops may reduce overall congestion and help you feel well enough to tackle the day.
    • Use saline nasal drops to relieve congestion. You can purchase these at most pharmacies.
  3. Decongest yourself with medication.If you have nasal, head, or bronchial congestion, take a decongestant or antihistamine. These may relieve your symptoms enough to help you get through the day. Look for "non-drowsy" decongestants if you need to be at work or school.
    • There are a wide variety of decongestants and antihistamines on the market. You can also find options that also contain pain relievers.
    • Take decongestants such as phenylephrine or pseudoephedrine and antihistamines such as loratadine or triprolidine.
    • Read the labels to see what ingredients are in your chosen product. This can help ensure that you don’t overlap with other medications you are taking to help you get through the day.
  4. Try pain relievers.Most people have body aches when they’re sick. Taking an over-the-counter medication can help get rid of any aches, pains, and discomfort you’re experiencing.
    • Pain relievers such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen sodium can get rid of any aches you have that keep you from getting through the day. Never take more than 4grams total in a 24hour period of all of these combined to avoid liver toxicity
  5. Take anti-diarrheal medication.If you have any illness that is accompanied by diarrhea, consider taking an anti-diarrheal medication. These can help reduce the number of watery bowel movements you have.
    • Take over the counter anti-diarrheals such as loperamide (Imodium A-D) and bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol).
    • If your diarrhea doesn’t subside or gets worse, make sure to see your doctor to rule out a serious condition.
  6. Consider alternative medicine remedies.Although there is no definitive scientific evidence that alternative medicine can relieve illness, many people still use natural remedies. See if taking vitamin C, echinacea, or zinc can help alleviate your symptoms enough to help you get through the day.
    • Avoid intranasal zinc, which may permanently damage your sense of smell.
    • Try raw garlic, which may help relieve sore throat symptoms.
    • Even if alternative medicines don't work, they may help based on the placebo effect — if you expect the treatment to help you feel better, you might actually experience real relief.Just make sure the treatment doesn't also have any negative side effects.

Community Q&A

  • Question
    What should I do if I feel as if I have a fever or I am very nauseous at school?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Ask your teacher if you can go to the bathroom, but bring your stuff with you. After you have sat by the toilet for a few minutes and have not thrown up, try standing up. If you still feel nauseous, try drinking some water. If you're still feeling bad, ask to go to the nurse. They can take your temperature there and you can probably lie down or ask to go home.
  • Question
    What should I do if I start running a fever at work?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Get some hot tea and get some fluids in you, and don't push your body - your health comes first. If you can't function through the day, you should go home to convalesce.
  • Question
    I have the stomach flu; I can't poop and I need to. I want to eat fiber, but that makes me throw up. Suggestions?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Drink lots of Gatorade and/or water. Make sure to eat saltine crackers and rest. You will eventually need to poop. You should not eat fiber when you have the stomach flu. Steer clear of dairy as well.
  • Question
    What if I have a blocked ear? I can barely hear!
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Try putting a drop of hydrogen peroxide in your ear and see if that helps. If it doesn't, go to the doctor or a walk-in clinic. They have special equipment they use to unblock ears. In the meantime, you'll just have to ask people to speak up!
  • Question
    What can replace chicken soup?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Any soup is fine, but I would suggest you avoid creamy soups if your stomach is upset.
Unanswered Questions
  • After how long of vomiting can I eat a good amount of food and exercise?
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