Friday, October 02, 2009

Good Advice

Please realize that this is not official advice, but it makes good common sense to me just the same.

Tamiflu does not kill but prevents H1N1 from further

proliferation till the virus limits itself in about 1-2 weeks (its

natural cycle). H1N1, like other Influenza A viruses, only infects the

upper respiratory tract and proliferates (only) there. The only portals

of entry are the nostrils and mouth/ throat. In a global epidemic of this

nature, it's almost impossible not coming into contact with H1N1 in

spite of all precautions.

Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is.

While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of

H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of

symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple

steps - not fully highlighted in most official communications- can be

practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu):

1. Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications).

2. "Hands-off-the-face" approach. Resist all temptations to

touch any part of face (unless you want to eat or bathe).

3. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use a mouth wash

if you don't trust salt). H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in

the throat/ nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms.

Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt

water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an

infected one. Don't underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful

preventative method.

4. Similar to 3 above, clean your nostrils at least once

every day with warm salt water. Not everybody may be good at Jala Neti or

Sutra Neti (very good Yoga asanas to clean nasal cavities), but blowing

the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds

dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.

5. Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in

Vitamin C (Amla and other citrus fruits). If you have to supplement with

Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption.

6. Drink as much of warm liquids as you can. Drinking warm

liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction.

They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach

where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

7. All these are simple ways to prevent, within means of most households,

and certainly much less painful than to wait in long queues outside public hospitals…

Thanks Margaret W.

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