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Be Your Own EMT

Fast fixes for 10 common (or freak) accidents.

Come Down With a Cold or Flu

Both influenza and the common cold are contagious respiratory illnesses caused by viral infections. The flu typically comes on more suddenly than a cold, and can cause fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headaches, and fatigue. In some cases, vomiting and diarrhea are present, but not usually in adults.

Treatment
● Kudrath says resting and rehydrating are mainstays. However, a severely ill patient may need to go to the ER—the flu kills more than 30,000 people a year in the U.S.
● Fever—the body’s natural response to infection—creates an environment unfavorable to the replication of virus- es. For a high fever (above 102°), try an NSAID to help control body temperature.
● DO NOT “starve a cold and feed a fever.” Eat small amounts of nutritious food when you’re hungry, and drink plenty of clear fluids to replace electrolytes and water even if you’re not thirsty.
● NOTE: Antibiotics are used to kill bacteria, not viruses. “People want antibiotics for everything,” Ross says, “but it’s unlikely that they’ll help, as 95% of respiratory infections are viral.”

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