Mononucleosis affects more than 3 million US citizens every year.  That is a ton of people who have dealt with this absolutely AWFUL illness. I'm not very happy to say that I am one of them.

Mono, according to my grandmother, is the "kissing disease." Mononucleosis got this name because, grossly, it is transmitted by saliva. If you ask me, that's not the worst part. It really is that there is no medicine to "fix" you. 

I was sitting in class early in my first semester of college, sweating (due to the fever I didn't know I had), and I felt this giant bump on my neck. Little did I know, that was a gland swelling up. Yuck. Mono is also conveniently known as glandular fever because your lymph nodes throughout your body tend to swell. So here are my recommendations on how to deal with this yourself. (Yeah, yeah, you're welcome.)

1. Water, water, water

My biggest tip for dealing with mono is to drink as much water as you possibly can. I know your throat probably feels worse than it ever has before, but it is extremely important that you drink water and other drinks such as gatorade, or tea. When sick with mono, you're supposed to drink 3-5 times as much water as usually. That is a lot of water. 

2. Get a Heating Pad

This may seem strange because you have a fever but if your mono is anything like mine, your glands are huge which causes pain in your ears. The only way I could fall asleep is to have a heating pad around my neck. Heating pads are a life saver. They can also help if your stomach is hurting from a swollen liver or spleen. 

3. Get Good Friends

I know this is hard when you're not living at home, but mono is a serious illness and it's not always possible to get healthy on  your own. Having my mom around for a while made dealing with mono a little bit easier. It's also nice to have some friends around to lift your spirits and keep you positive. 

I'm hoping that you will never have to experience the gruesome pain that comes with mono but if you ever have to (knocking on wood), you're well-equipped and ready for your five or hopefully less months of suffering.

4. Stay Away From Alcohol 

I know this may be a bummer for some, but staying away from alcohol is really important when you have mono. Because mono can cause issues with your liver, you can cause serious harm if you drink while sick. Consuming alcohol can cause permanent damage or even shut down your liver. To reduce the amount of time you're sick, definitely stay away from all alcoholic beverages.

5. Sleep a TON

Mono is most known for the fatigue that it causes. Mono can cause extreme fatigue for weeks on end. It's important to listen to your body and sleep. Let your professors or teachers know that you have mono and make sure they take that into consideration when evaluating your attendance.


Mono can make it tough to keep up with school but the most important thing to do is listen to your body and give it the rest that it needs in order to recover. 

I'm hoping that all of these tips will help your time dealing with mono just a little bit easier. I found that drinking a ton of water and sleeping as much as I could made this illness a bit more bearable. Don't push yourself and give your body the time it needs to heal. I know it's extremely frustrating to be basically bed-ridden for an extended period of time, but you gotta do what you gotta do to get healthy again.