How to avoid freshers' flu

(20 Posts)
bevelino Mon 28-Aug-17 19:59:16

Dd will shortly be starting uni and is concerned about contracting freshers' flu. Dd is hopeless at being ill and will be on the phone to me at the first hint of illness and will have self diagnosed (from t'internet) pneumonia. Dh and I are keen to avoid the dramatic phone calls and dash up the motorway. Is there anything we can do to protect dd from freshers' flu?

OP’s posts: |
Horsemad Mon 28-Aug-17 20:06:46

Vitamin tablets and good hand washing!

Ttbb Mon 28-Aug-17 20:10:01

Not kissing anything that moves-how else do you think they get it?

BuzzKillington Mon 28-Aug-17 20:10:48

My son didn't get it - it's not something they all get.

And even if they are ill, it's part of the living away from home/independence. Send her off with lots of ibuprofen and paracetamol and make sure she registers with a GP (my son is about to be a 2nd year and hasn't managed this yet confused). She will soon learn that she can't be on the phone to you every time she feels unwell.

NiceCardigan Mon 28-Aug-17 20:12:08

The short answer is no - germs descend from all four courners the uk, not enough sleep and living off rubbish food. It's no wonder they end up ill. The best thing to do is pack paracetamol and say You won't put up with any dramas.

YellowLawn Mon 28-Aug-17 20:12:23

men vaccine.
apart from that: sleep & rest <hollow laugh>, good nutrition, exercise, using condoms.
when new groups of people mingle there will be plenty of new bugs about to share.

museumum Mon 28-Aug-17 20:13:56

It's not really flu. Just cold viruses that get passed about due to people coming together from all over and then burning the candle both ends.
Ah won't get through the year without a cold so she just needs to learn to cope.


Almostthere15 Mon 28-Aug-17 20:15:38

She could try vicks first defense for the first week and some berocca (I think as a placebo more than anything else). To protect the immune system sleep is so important but noone ever wants to be the first to bed. Between now and then I'd emphasise how she can cope if she gets poorly and put into place a plan (including understanding how to suitably dose). Good luck

chocoshopoholic Mon 28-Aug-17 20:21:33

Eat well, sleep well, wash hands lots and be ready with lemsip if (when) it happens.

Topseyt Mon 28-Aug-17 20:22:24

Make sure all vaccines and boosters are up to date, but other than that there is little you can do.

Students often burn the candle at both ends, with late nights (or all nighters), so their immune systems can drop and they become susceptible to "freshers" flu. They think they are invincible, but soon find out they aren't.

I didn't get it, 30 or more years ago, but my DD1 did in the last few years. She is more of a party animal than I ever was though, so I wonder if that was the difference there?

LRDtheFeministDragon Mon 28-Aug-17 20:27:58

I've been at university as a student or a teacher since 2003. I do get freshers' flu sometimes, just because you're coming into contact with 90 zillion unfamiliar germs, but here are my tried and tested precautions:

- wash your face (not just hands) whenever you get home.
- wash your hands often.
- carry lots of tissues. Use them.
- eat healthily and drink plenty (this will just make you feel better).
- rest plenty (ditto)
- if you must party, buy your own drinks and think about basic cleanliness (ie., no downing communal shots - surprisingly common)
- don't lean on the bar.
- learn to wash up in properly hot water.
- learn to clean the kitchen counters.
- avoid communal hand towels.

When you do feel ill, go to bed with a big bottle of water/juice/some honey and lemon and sleep it off. Don't tough it out if you don't have to. Email your supervisor if you need to miss a class/seminar. Honestly - I will love your child forever if s/he offers to stay away from class while ill. One of the most depressing things in the world is being stuck, for an hour, half a metre of desk away from a germ-infested teenager with insufficient tissues, who clearly isn't taking anything in and is also showering me with whatever s/eh has got every time s/he fails to contain a sneeze or cough. Bleugh.

OvariesBeforeBrovaries Mon 28-Aug-17 20:35:53

Freshers' flu is to be worn as a badge of honour in your first lectures, it's a sign that you had a bloody good time grin

Lemsip, Berocca, Sudofed, hot orange squash with manuka honey spooned into it and a big dose of big girl pants wink

Haffdonga Mon 28-Aug-17 20:40:42

Don't exchange bodily fluids with anyone.
Don't sit in areas with a large number of people you've never met before.
Don't exhaust yourself (and your immunity) by late nights and alcohol consumption.
Don't put yourself in situations of high stress.
Don't share accommodation with other people who have done any of the above.


bevelino Mon 28-Aug-17 20:46:20

Thanks everyone for your advice. Dd has a stash of berocca, but not much else. However, I will now send her off with a full first aid kit complete with paracetamol, ibuprofen and cough medicine and will warn her about hand washing (which she is not very good at). As for the phone calls home complaining that she has the worst illness ever, I am not sure I can stop those without blocking her. If I did that she will get to me by calling dh wondering what on earth has happened to me.

OP’s posts: |
Kez100 Mon 28-Aug-17 20:47:16

Don't touch the handrails in halls. Or wash hands and sanitise after doing do.

Avoid freshers!

Pack a first aid kit with all the stuff she will need I it then, when the message comes, you can send her in the direction of her first aid box.

My DD got ill but after a few weeks - she thought she had got away with it. It was quite nasty too and I think her diet didn't help. She's not a drinker, so it wasn't that, but I think she'd discovered she like tuna pasta and, whilst a decent meal, by week three she'd eaten it for tea approximately 20 times!

Anyway, she moaned a bit by text but recovered.

bevelino Mon 28-Aug-17 20:48:10

Haffdonga, your post has made me laugh and I have just relayed your wise advice to dd and she is also laughing 😂

OP’s posts: |
OhYouBadBadKitten Tue 29-Aug-17 06:29:33

dd gets her flu jab annually because of asthma, but at this age anyone can get it at Boots or Superdrug or similar. It at least helps them avoid real flu.

chelseahotel Tue 29-Aug-17 17:28:36

It's not flu of course but new exposure to unfamiliar bugs.
DS got a really nasty dose and took weeks to shake it off. He wasn't overdoing the clubbing either. He is going prepared for it this year, lots of hand washing and hand gel. He reckons lots of overseas students wear face masks but that's a bit extreme grin

OhYouBadBadKitten Tue 29-Aug-17 17:50:03

I managed to get real flu as a student. It was dreadful and I ended up being admitted into medical for a week. Unfortunately it does spread rapidly in closed communities.

LizTaylorsFabulousTurban Tue 29-Aug-17 17:53:20

I'm a lecturer and get it every year and can assure you I haven't been kissing the students grin. So if you find out the answer let me know. I actually might try the First Defence and see how I get on this year.

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