Flu, colds, allergies all prevalent in New Mexico | KOB 4
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Flu, colds, allergies all prevalent in New Mexico

Emily Jaceks and Joseph Lynch
March 08, 2018 05:55 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- The coughs, the sniffles, and the itchy and watery eyes are signs something's not right. But is it the flu?

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It's a perfect storm of sickness right now, and doctors say they're seeing it all. Everything from allergies, colds, sinus infections and the flu is still widespread in New Mexico.

The end of flu season is still weeks away, so the chances of catching it are still high for those haven't got your flu shot this year.

"With flu, you feel horrible," said Dr. Randall Knott. "You can't get out of bed. You have a high fever. Your muscle aches, horrible coughing."

But there's another possibility -- a bad cold. Respiratory syncytial virus, or RVS, looks like the flu but doesn't have the high fever or the traditional body aches.

"With respiratory viruses, if you have fever that lasts four to five days or you get worse in terms of breathing well or how you feel instead of getting better, you need to see a doctor," Knott said.

If there's itching, allergies are likely the problem.

"Allergies is classically sneezing, itching nose, itching, watery eyes, that kind of thing," Knott said. "No fever."

With so many different severe viruses going around right now, Knott said be careful about going in to see the doctor. Only go in if absolutely necessary, he said, because you may pick up something worse than you originally had.

If it's allergies, you may have tried over the counter medication to find relief, one local man wasn't able to try those medications himself because of his job, but he's had his allergies under control since 1970.

Back then, Kenneth Hays dealt with hellish allergies that he couldn’t deal treat with antihistamines. Hays said that's why he ended up with his first beehive.

"Within five months of taking local pollen and local honey -- spring in the spring, summer in the summer and fall in the fall -- I was cured," he said. "And I've been cured ever since."

It’s called apitherapy. Some even call it bee venom therapy. It doesn't have to be as extreme as getting stung for relief. It can be as simple as eating local honey. Hays said the closer it comes from your home the better.

"The closer you are to where you buy your honey, the better you are," he said. "So what you want to do is you want to find a local beekeeper and have that person sell you New Mexico local honey or pollen."

Besides, Hays doesn't think it's often that something that tastes good is also good for you.  

"I have honey every day," he said. "Once or twice or three times a day. It's so healthy for you and all the bee products -- the propolis, the pollen, all those things are so healthy for you."

Hays hopes that some people might open their minds to what he discovered nearly 50 years ago. Bees aren’t to be swatted or killed.

"If a bee buzzes you, she's disinterested. She's not interested in you. Never swat at a bee," he said. "You can't outrun them. They can fly 18 miles per hour so you're not going to outrun them. Just duck your head and walk off and they are so wonderful."

Credits

Emily Jaceks and Joseph Lynch

Copyright 2018 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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