Fall is here–so are big exams and college applications. Whether you are looking to go away for school or stay local, the countdown to college begins with many things to think about, including issues related to good health. Luckily, Julie Dickens—who knows all about these issues as a parent of high school and college students, healthcare professional, and founder of Cold FAid™—shared four powerful tips with us to help you stay healthy while in school.
1. Get Organized
The first thing that you should do to ready your health portfolio for college is to organize who to call if you need to see a health care provider. Enter into your mobile phone your contacts for the following: primary care provider, dentist, ophthalmologist, pharmacy, and health care insurance carrier. Make sure to obtain a copy of your health insurance card to carry in your wallet.
2. Think Prevention
Be sure to get a copy of your vaccination record. Leave a reminder on your calendar for January to call your primary care provider and schedule a physical examination in the spring. Make sure your vaccinations are up-to-date. Additional vaccinations, such as a meningitis vaccination, are typically recommended before going to college. Remember that you are advised to get a flu shot each fall.
3. Get Prepared for Cold Season
It’s common for college students to get sick within weeks of starting school. Getting a cold when you are at home is bad enough, but getting sick at college, when you don’t have your parents around—or a stocked medicine cabinet—is even worse. Be prepared with the medicines you need you need to target all of the major cold symptoms, like sore throat, congestion, and sneezing. You should also have a supply of zinc lozenges, which have been shown to help reduce the severity and duration of a cold. Taking these at the first signs of a cold will help you feel better sooner. Don’t know exactly what you need? Don’t worry… the Cold FAid™ kit and its accompanying app have you covered.
4. Learn How to Cook Healthy
Eating right is very important at any point in your life but is particularly tough when you are in charge of your own meals . Poor eating habits can have a negative impact on your health. You may have access to a communal kitchen in your dorm. You can save a lot of money and eat healthier too by learning to prepare some of your own foods. So, find some dorm-friendly recipes and practice cooking them at home.