Surveys show that Americans suffer a billion colds each year. Yes, you read that right…one BILLION, with a B! When you add in the flu, that number is even higher. There are things you can do to avoid becoming one of those miserable statistics. The single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated each year, but good health habits like covering your cough, and washing your hands often can help stop the spread of germs and prevent respiratory illnesses like the flu. Here are a few more tips that will help you survive this year’s cold and flu season.
Avoid close contact | Avoid coming into close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick, too.
Stay home when you are sick | If possible, stay home from work, school, and anywhere public when you are sick. This will help prevent spreading your illness to others.
Cover your mouth and nose | Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.
Clean your hands | Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizing gel.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and/or mouth | Sickness is often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs, and then touches his or her eyes, nose, and/or mouth. Try to avoid unnecessarily touching your face in general to help avoid germs entering your body.
Practice other good health habits | Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress level, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
Following these simple tips can help you keep yourself (and those around you) well this cold and flu season!