This post may contain affiliate links and we may earn compensation when you click on the links at no additional cost to you.
I am nothing if not a “prepper”. I realized a long time ago that most of the things that I prepare for never happens. I'm totally okay with that! One thing that I prep for each year and, we always end up using, is my cold and flu preps. I've partnered with CVS to share my cold and flu season must haves.
The first thing I always do each season is to get a flu shot. We just got ours this week, which is later than we normally do, but since the flu season is just starting, it is still a good time to do it.
Since getting a flu shot is the most effective way to protect our family from getting the flu, we get the flu shot every year. The immunity provided by the vaccine declines over time. It takes up to two weeks for your immunity to build up after getting a flu shot, so the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends you get vaccinated as soon as flu vaccine becomes available. In addition to getting a flu shot, we make it a habit to wash our hands frequently, and throughout the day, which can help prevent the flu.
We get our flu shot at the MinuteClinic inside of CVS, and you can also get one at the CVS Pharmacy, and within CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic locations inside select Target stores. We used the 20% off coupon that we were each given after getting our flu shots to restock our cold and flu supplies.
In addition to the flu shots, we also keep and use probiotics and AirShield as part of a healthy lifestyle during the cold and flu season. We bought a couple more while we were at the store.
Since staying hydrated when you are ill is so important, Pete and I headed over to buy some flavored water while the girls got some snacks.
And I also picked up some comfort items I like to keep on hand for colds and flu. Both of these really soothe sore throats.
Back at home, I got everything ready and put into one area so that when we need it we can get to it quickly and easily. One thing that I learned early on as a parent is that kids get sick in the middle of the night more so than in the morning. Searching through a medicine cabinet at 2 in the morning for fever reducer medicine is not fun! So keeping it all together helps make that not fun time a tad better.
I also learned the importance of going through your medicine cabinet and replacing expired medicine. Also, it helps to keep an inventory of what you are almost out of so that you can always make sure you have enough on hand.
The main players in my cold and flu must-haves are pain relievers (both adults and children's), shower vapor tabs, chest rub, and adult day and nighttime flu relieve meds. I also am very careful to remember that flu relief medicine often has pain relievers in them so it is important not to take these with standalone pain relievers.
When we checked out we got $15 in ExtraBucks® Rewards. I don't have a picture to share because Pete took them right back in and bought a Halloween witch decoration. I'm not even kidding!
If you are knew to the CVS Pharmacy ExtraCare program, it helps you save and earn rewards on nearly everything you buy – from household goods, to beauty products, to gifts for family and friends. Each time you shop you just scan your card or enter your phone number and you get:
- ExtraSavings™: ExtraCare members receive ExtraSavings™ in the form of personalized coupons, weekly circular deals, and automatic discounts when they shop at CVS Pharmacy. ExtraSavings™ include money-saving offers delivered on register receipts, at the in-store ExtraCare Coupon Centers, and delivered via email and the CVS Pharmacy app, as well as sale prices for simply using an ExtraCare card during each visit.
- ExtraBucks® Rewards: ExtraBucks® Rewards are like “free CVS money” that can be used on most things at CVS Pharmacy.* Unlike other confusing points-based loyalty programs, ExtraBucks® Rewards were designed to make it easy for cardholders to redeem their rewards by spending them on nearly anything they want throughout the store. Shoppers earn 2% back on nearly all purchases made throughout the store. These rewards are just for scanning an ExtraCare card during each shopping trip, and are paid out quarterly on January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1. Members also earn ExtraBucks® Rewards by purchasing specially-advertised items that pay out at the time of the qualifying purchase.
It is the easiest program to use and I love that I can use it here at home or when we are traveling to other parts of the country.
CVS Pharmacy’s 9,600 locations have everything you need for preventing and treating the flu, including multiple flu vaccine options, over-the-counter cold and flu remedies, multivitamins and anti-bacterial cleaning products and are open every day, including evenings and weekends, with no appointment needed. Visit CVS.com/flu to locate the CVS Pharmacy closest to you and to learn more information on the vaccines offered. Certain immunizations have age and location restrictions.