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True or False: Antibiotic ointment in nose prevents flu

Posts on social media say antibiotic ointment could help reduce your chances of getting the flu.

Posted: Feb 12, 2018 6:36 PM
Updated: Feb 12, 2018 6:52 PM

BRAZIL, Ind. (WTHI)- With several tragic reports of the flu this year, people are eager to find an answer to prevent the flu.

Doctors recommend washing your hands and taking Vitamin C to combat the flu.

Now, people are turning to a new trend on social media. There's advice circulating online that suggests a home remedy could be the answer to keep you from catching the deadly virus.

Lynn Hostetler, a local pharamacist, thinks this flu season has gotten a lot of attention.

"I think there is a lot of hype," Hostetler said. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report everyone and everywhere is trying to fight off the flu.

Hostetler says taking Vitamin D is one way to fight the virus.

"When you keep your Vitamin D levels up, that keeps your immune system up," Hostetler said. 

Posts on social media say antibiotic ointment could help reduce your chances of getting the flu. The post suggest to apply a thin layer of the ointment with a cotton swab in each nostril at least once a day. 

"My present knowledge and what I've read about it, it's probably not that great of a thing," Hostetler said. 

Hostetler says this particular remedy is not true. 

"The antibiotic ointment only works against bugs and not viruses," he said. 

He says the ointment is mean't to combat things from the environment that are bacterial. And, the flu is viral.

Hostetler says an alternative to the antibiotic ointment is Aqua Gel. For about $6, he says this water-based product helps moisturize your nose. 

"It keeps viruses from coming through," Hostelter said. 

And, if you are lucky enough to get the flu, he says lozenges containing Zinc can help ease symptoms. 

"They reduce the length of the cold by about half," Hostetler said. 

The flu vaccine and washing your hands remain the best lines of defense. 

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