You have a unique medical history. Therefore, it is essential to talk with your doctor about your personal risk factors or experience with colds and the flu. By talking openly and regularly with your doctor, you can take an active role in your care.

To make it easier for you to talk to your doctor:

  • Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said. They may think of questions to ask.
  • Write out your questions ahead of time, so you don't forget them.
  • Write down the answers you get. Make sure you understand what you are hearing. If you don't, tell the doctor. Ask for educational materials.
  • Ask where you can find more information. You have a right to know.
  • Can this be more serious than a cold or the flu?
  • Do I have any health problems that might get worse because of this virus?
  • What can I do to prevent other health problems?
  • What treatments do you recommend?
  • Do I need anything besides rest, good nutrition, humidified air, over-the counter (OTC) drugs, and maybe a warm bath?
  • Do you have a favorite remedy, like honey and vinegar or herbs like Echinacea?
  • Should I get a flu shot each year?
  • Is there anyone around me who might need special protection because of my virus?
  • Should I, or anyone I live with, take preventive doses of medicine (medicine to prevent the flu)?
  • Should I call if I am not getting better in 10 days or if I’m getting worse at anytime?
  • What other symptoms should I be on the lookout for?

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