Make it a Flu-free Holiday Season!
It’s that wonderful time of year again – pumpkins, turkeys and holiday lights abound! But there is something quite unpleasant that lurks when the temperature drops. Unfortunately, the holiday season also happens during flu season (which lasts from October through March). Here are five easy tips to keeping your holidays healthy!
- Flu shot – The flu vaccine is your first line of defense. It is suitable for everyone over six months of age, unless severely allergic to gelatin, antibiotics, eggs or other ingredients in the vaccine. There are certain vaccines that are only for adults, and some specifically suited for older adults. Keep in mind that the flu can be more detrimental to children and seniors, so it is important they are protected.
- Wash your hands with soap and water – according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, up to 80 percent of infections are transmitted by touch. Many pathogens, such as norovirus, Salmonella, and E. coli can be spread by the hands, especially after using the the toilet, changing diapers, or handling raw meat. Proper hand washing includes wetting your hands with running water, applying and lathering soap, scrubbing soapy hands together for at least 20 seconds, rinsing hands under running water, and drying with a clean towel (or air drying).
- Limit contact with anyone who exhibits flu-like symptoms. If you become sick, keep a distance from others to avoid spreading disease. Be sure to cover your nose and mouth (ideally with a tissue) when you cough or sneeze. Immediately throw the used tissue away.
- Avoid touching your nose, eyes, or mouth – bacteria can directly enter the body this way.
For more information on fighting the flu, visit this website: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/preventing.htm