The flu is a common illness which afflicts millions of people each year. It’s severity can vary from person to person. The flu can cause you to be bedridden for several days and in severe cases, it could result in death. There is a lot of information out there concerning the flu, what causes it, it’s symptoms and effective treatment options. Although some of the advice that you receive from friends family may prove to be true, there are a few myths that have been widely believed by a majority of people. Below are some of the most common misconceptions concerning the flu.
- Exposure to cold causes the flu
Although cold weather may increase your chances of getting the flu due to the fact that many people have the flu, low temperatures do not directly cause infection by the virus. This misconception may have arisen from the fact that flu season usually comes at the same time as autumn and winter.
For you to get the flu, you need to be exposed to the influenza virus. This means that no matter the weather, you can catch the flu as long as you have come into contact with the virus itself. Nevertheless, cold weather may increase the manifestation of symptoms caused by the flu such as a running nose. Warmth and humidity help to ease the symptoms.
- Getting flu shots can give you the flu
Flu vaccines are often misunderstood. They contain a weakened form of the virus hence most people assume that you can get infected by getting flu shots. In reality, this purified form of the virus cannot result in infection unless if you had been exposed to the virus prior to the vaccination.
- Chicken soup can cure the flu
Even though chicken soup is extremely delicious and nutritious, it is lacks the active ingredients required to combat the flu. In most cases, this tasty soup is served as a hot liquid. This warmth and moisture may aid in alleviating the symptoms of the flu by soothing a sore throat and causing adequate hydration.
- Serious coughs are always caused by the flu
Coughing is one of the symptoms associated with the flu, however not all coughs are flu-related. Several infections such as the common cold and pneumonia as well as other conditions like asthma could also cause a persistent cough. In order to determine the accurate cause of your cough, it is advisable for you to seek medical attention so that you may receive appropriate cough treatment.
- Taking antibiotics can cure the flu
Influenza is caused by a virus and hence, antibiotics will have little or no effect in the fight against the flu. However, it is important to note that certain complications arising from the flu can lead to bacterial infections. Hence, you shouldn’t be surprised if your doctor recommends antibiotics in collaboration with other drugs. Antivirals don’t cure influenza, they simply reduce your likelihood of infecting others while also treating the symptoms that arise due to influenza. Adequate rest and plenty of fluids are essential to receiving a quick recovery.