If you’ve been to any amount of conventions, you know all about con crud. The last day or so of con, you get a little sneezy. Then, before you know it, you’ve got a full-blown cold on your hands – if you’re lucky.
Seriously, I drove home from Celebration 3 with bronchitis. Five hours in the car. With only bronchitis for company. NOT RECOMMENDED.
Luckily, the precautions are fairly simple and nothing but basic common sense. Well, mostly.
- Don’t neglect sleep. As fun as it is to stay up all night chatting (oh, do Jaders know) it’s important to get a good night’s sleep. It helps your immune system and makes you pretty!
- Eat well and stay hydrated. Don’t skip too many meals. Yes, you’ll probably end up eating not-so-great food in the convention center and/or granola bars at least once a day. (Particularly in Orlando in August, where getting anywhere can be an ordeal.) But try and get at least one, if not two, real meals a day.
- Seriously, stay hydrated. There’s no lack of bathrooms in the OCCC. It has the most bathrooms of any con center I’ve ever been in. Drink lots of water.
- Wash your hands well and a lot. Use hand sanitizer when you’re on the go, and after handling items like elevator buttons and menus.
- Be prudent with physical contact. Hugs and handshakes spread germs! GERMS! Let’s practice the art of the brofist this year.
- Vitamins! Some recommend Vitamin C, some an Airborne regimen, author Jennifer Brozek swears by Sambucus and for the Canadians, Michelle Heumann recs ColdFX. I don’t know what works, effectiveness probably varies from person to person and nothing is foolproof, but it’s worth a try.
- Want to scare your roommate a little? Pack antibacterial wipes and wipe down all the door handles and other hard surfaces in your room. Hey, it’s a bit much, but better safe than sorry! (You might also want to avoid the glasses in the room, and touch the bedspread as little as possible. why yes, maybe I have watched too much CSI.)
And if you do get con crud… Well, I’ll let Paula take this one: “As a public health professional, I BEG people that if they do become sick to STAY IN THEIR HOTEL! Don’t take out the rest of us!”
Oh, and be careful with your meds. Last time I got the crud I accidently took two Claritins within an hour of each other and ended up so zoned out that all I did was stare at the back of the seat the entire plane ride home. NOT RECOMMENDED.