The flu is a highly contagious, upper respiratory virus that affects people of all ages every year.
The flu ranges in severity from mild to severe and in some extreme cases, in death. During the flu season be on the watch for such symptoms as a fever, a cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, and fatigue. Not everyone will have all of these symptoms at one time. To best protect yourself from the flu or other viruses like the recent COVID-19, let Rain City Maids show you how to prevent the flu with these best tips!
According to the CDC, “Everyone six months of age and older should get influenza (flu) vaccine every season with rare exceptions .” It’s recommended to get your vaccine near the end of October when flu season begins. The flu vaccine is especially beneficial for young children, the elderly, pregnant women, and the ill.
Stay Home, Avoid Crowds and Unnecessary Travel
Whether you’re a parent with sick kids, a business person with a slight fever late for a trip, or a sick college student during finals, do your best to stay home. People sick with the flu are more contagious in the first 3 to 4 days of being sick. The CDC recommends “that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities.”
Practice Proper Hygiene
A great and simple defense against the flu virus and germs is to wash your hands frequently and for at least 20 seconds. A trick for your children is to have them wash their hands, while singing their ABCs until the song is finished. You should also avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth as they offer a direct route for germs and viruses to enter your body. When you sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or the crook of your arm. When you blow your nose make sure to wash your hands and dispose of the tissue. All of these healthy hygiene practices will help guard you and others against getting sick.
According to the CDC, “a person might get [the] flu by touching a surface or object that has [the] flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose or possibly their eyes.” Therefore, it’s important to take precautionary steps during a flu outbreak to sanitize your home. To disinfect thoroughly, don’t forget to clean your phones, the remote control, the bathroom, all tables, computers, tablets, gaming controllers and handhelds, toys, sheets, blankets, and towels. Also, when doing the laundry use a basket. Clothes harbor germs too.
Practice Good Health Habits
Not only should you eat a well-balanced meal normally, but do so to ward off illnesses especially for flu prevention. Supplements and good bacteria also contribute to balancing the health of your system while giving it an added boost. Some examples include: probiotic supplements, Greek yogurt, vitamin c, vitamin d, zinc, garlic, echinacea, etc. More importantly, drink plenty of water, exercise frequently, reduce your stress levels, get plenty of rest, and routinely visit your physician.
Humidify the Home
“Higher humidity levels indoors can significantly reduce the infectivity of influenza virus particles released by coughing, according to new research,” says the Public Library of Science. Installing a humidifier is a simple step to take to decrease the likeliness of the flu entering your home. Moreover, the moist air helps soothe sore throats and hacking coughs in the likelihood you get sick. To boost your humidifier further, add a few drops of your favorite essential oil.
Try an Air Purifier
When we think about disinfecting our home, we imagine cleaning surfaces and objects to their fullest. We don’t stop to think about the dirty air we breathe. The flu is an airborne virus that can come in contact with any object or person and “can live outside of a body from between a few seconds to 48 hours.” At CNN.com Ted Myatt says, “Air purifiers can remove the smallest microbes in the air, reducing harmful airborne germs that not only include cold and flu viruses but also dust, pollen, mold spores, pet dander, and smoke particles.”
This fast-paced world of ours makes us forget to eat properly, to get enough quality sleep, to slot out time for ourselves, and to practice living a worthy life. However, it’s the little things we do in our lives that make the biggest differences. So, don’t let the flu season get the best of you. Take the initiative and make the necessary changes in your life that will not only improve the quality of your health but leave you filled with the peace of mind.