Tips For Staying Healthy When on Immunosuppressants

If anyone else needs a few pointers on steering clear of sick people I hope this can help!

Rather good at this skill

Being obnoxious about immunosuppressants since the age of 8 has helped me get rather good at this skill. NEVER let someone who is sick put your health at risk. At times it might feel obnoxious to do so. But remember, this is your health and being immunosuppressed, you are much more vulnerable to catching something. When you do catch something, it usually lasts longer and is way worse than it is for most people. Here are 5 tips that I have found are helpful to me.

Don’t ever share drinks

When literally anytime someone goes to take a sip of my drink I just simply say “hey don’t do that, my throat is itchy, I have not been feeling so good." They don’t need to know this is not true. You get to protect yourself without feeling like a jerk for stopping them from drinking your drink.

Hand sanitizer is your friend

If your doctors have not told you this yet, hand sanitizer is your friend. When the winter months approach, leave them in every spot you can think of so you always have one floating around.

Masks for the win

One of my least favorite but a very important one: when it is flu season and you are flying, wear a mask on the plane. I still struggle with this one but trust me, when you get on the plane and everyone is hacking a lung you will thank me. And if you feel silly about doing it, know you are not alone my friend - I feel the same way. But it is such an important thing to do.

Stay away if sick

Tell your friends to stay away from you if they are sick. It may be awkward to do this at times, but if they are your friend, they will get it. As I have gotten older, I have made more friends who don’t know “heart transplant Alyssa” from when I was little. To them, I look like a perfectly healthy girl and they did not see the struggles I went through when I was younger.

I find myself showing up to plans and they are sick - not just a cold but the type of sick you want to say to them “you probably should have stayed in bed”. Let them know you can’t be around them and if they don’t get it, that is their problem, not yours.

LOVE your body

The most important tip of all. LOVE your body. Put the food and exercise in it you need to stay healthy. Know your warning signs of getting sick. For me, it is canker sores. When I feel one coming in I know it is time to slow down and get extra rest. You do not have the same stamina as everyone else and that is okay. Don’t push through the illness because you feel like you need to be superwoman. Say NO to plans because it is what is best for you.

These tips are just a start, but I hope they can help!!

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