How to be Flu Season Ready: A Preparedness Checklist

Each year on the third Tuesday in September, the American Public Health Association holds a Get Ready Day to help prepare for emergencies and disasters. As flu season approaches and our aging neighbors may face difficulties getting what they need when sick, we’ve created a helpful checklist for flu preparedness. The flu can hit you when you least expect it and can be a disaster of its own kind!

Be prepared with this handy flu checklist!

1️⃣ Stock Up on Essentials:
When you’re under the weather, the last thing you want to do is venture out to the store. That’s why it’s essential to keep a well-stocked pantry and medicine cabinet. Here’s what you should have on hand:

  • Food: Have plenty of foods that are good for the stomach flu such as chicken soup, broth, Saltines, Oyster crackers, toast, applesauce, Popsicles, etc. Try and have at least one week’s worth of non-perishable food in the house. Think of easy-to-prepare items like canned soup, pasta, and rice that can provide sustenance without much effort.
  • Beverages: Stock up on beverages that you enjoy when you’re sick. This might include ginger ale, 7-Up/Sprite, sparkling water, sugar free electrolyte drinks, caffeine-free herbal teas (i.e. Elderberry, Echinacea, Peppermint, Throat Coat, etc.) or any other soothing beverages that make you feel better.
  • Pink Salt: When you have the flu, it’s important to focus on staying hydrated. Pink Himalayan salt contains 84 minerals and can help replenish electrolytes lost during illness. You can add 1/8 tsp to your broth or tea.
  • Supplements: Having a selection of supplements on hand can be beneficial for supporting your overall health, especially during flu season or when you’re feeling under the weather. Consider taking these supplements during flu season to help prevent the flu and aid in recovery: Vitamin C, D, zinc, Echinacea, Elderberry and immune-boosting supplements.

2️⃣ Health Supplies:
Having the right health supplies on hand can make a significant difference in your recovery process:

  • Thermometer: A reliable thermometer can help you monitor your fever, a common symptom of the flu.
  • Medications: Keep your medicine cabinet stocked. It’s a good idea to have some over-the-counter medications and supplies on hand such as decongestants, cough suppressants, antihistamines, throat lozenges, antacids (like Tums) on hand throughout the flu season. If you have any chronic health conditions or take prescription medications regularly, ensure you have an adequate supply of these on hand.
  • Tissues: You’ll go through tissues quickly when you have a runny nose. Having a stock of soft tissues with lotion can help prevent a sore nose.
  • Heart and Oxygen Monitor: For those with pre-existing health conditions or experiencing severe flu symptoms, a heart and oxygen monitor can be a useful tool to have at home.

3️⃣ Entertainment and Comfort:
Fighting the flu often involves plenty of rest and downtime. Prepare for this by:

  • Creating a Playlist: Make a playlist of your favorite shows and soothing music to keep you entertained and relaxed during your recovery.
  • Game Apps: Download some apps to keep you entertained when you’re feeling better and looking to pass the time. You’ll find plenty of options for playing crossword puzzles, Sudoku, or jigsaw puzzles.
  • Reading Materials: A good book or e-reader with your favorite novels or magazines engages your mind and keeps your cognitive functions active, preventing boredom and cabin fever during your recovery.
  • Podcasts or Audiobooks: Listen to interesting podcasts or audiobooks when you don’t feel like reading.
  • Healing Frequencies: Some people find comfort in listening to healing frequencies or guided meditation. You can find these on platforms like YouTube or streaming services.

By having essential supplies and comfort items readily available, you can focus on rest and recovery, ultimately helping you bounce back faster.

Stay prepared to stay well!