What's Going Around: Cold & flu season taking a toll - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

What's Going Around: Cold & flu season taking a toll

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Cold and flu season continues to take its toll on us. Much of the country is seeing widespread influenza, including Wisconsin.

Dr. Thomas Varley with Prairie Clinic in Sauk City says he's getting a lot of calls from people with flu-like symptoms. Whether it's influenza or a cold, Dr. Varley says there's not a lot to be done.

He says all you can do to get better is stay home, get a lot of rest and drink a lot of fluids. Dr. Varley says to prevent spreading illness, cover your mouth when you cough, wash those hands a lot and let your body heal.

Dr. Varley says at this point, you can probably avoid seeking out medical care and wasting money on an office visit, prescriptions or over-the-counter medications because those things will do little to help most people.

Dr. Varley says if you really have the flu, antiviral medication can shorten the illness, but only by one day and only if it's started within 72 hours of getting symptoms. Plus, it has side effects of headache and nausea.

To avoid getting sick, Dr. Varley suggests to exercise every day, get plenty of sleep and eat a healthy diet. He also says to consider the flu vaccine to avoid most of the misery next year.

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