We’re in flu season, but many experts predict the peak of this year’s flu won’t occur until the end of January and beginning of February. Stay healthy throughout the season by preventing the common cold and flu virus with these helpful tips:
- The most obvious tip is to wash your hands often throughout the day with soap and water. Remember the five simple steps of hand washing recommended by the CDC, which are wet, lather, scrub, rinse and dry.
- Avoid touching your face excessively. Wiping our eyes, covering our mouths or rubbing our nose can be done without even thinking, but watch these behaviors to avoid catching a cold or the flu. Germs are easily spread from the fingers to the eyes, nose and mouth, so keeping fingers away will help you prevent getting sick.
- If despite your efforts, you feel like you’re catching something, try popping a few zinc lozenges. Zinc has been proven to shorten the duration of cold and reduce the severity of symptoms, so taking these prior to fully developing the cold will help you bounce back quickly.
- Keep moving by exercising consistently throughout the cold and flu season. Keeping your body moving and healthy will boost your immune system and help you fight off potential viruses.
- If you’re not feeling well, don’t feel pressured to go to work or school. By ignoring your body telling you to stay home and rest, not only are you going to be sick longer, you’re going to more than likely contaminate others around you.
- Get plenty of sleep throughout the cold and flu season to keep your body healthy and rested.
- Take vitamins, like vitamin C, which is known to help alleviate colds and strengthen the immune system. Even if you don’t feel like you’re getting sick, popping a daily vitamin will help you stay healthy.
- Keep areas in the house germ-free by wiping down places that are frequently touched, like in the kitchen or bathroom with Clorox wipes. Areas such as door knobs and remote controls are usually forgotten about, even though they carry tons of germs!
- Congested? Drink warm such as hot tea to help relieve the pressure and pain that comes along with congested sinuses.
- Carry tissues with you during cold and flu season so you can cover your mouth and nose if you do happen to sneeze or cough. Don’t use your hands! If you’re without tissues and have to use your hands, be sure to wash them immediately after.
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