Achoo! Now that fall is in full swing, cold and flu season is upon us. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cold and flu season actually started back on Oct. 1. Try following these four quick and easy tips to boost your chance of staying healthy during cold and flu season—or at least minimizing your downtime if you don’t.
Get a flu shot: It’s the No. 1 thing you can do to prevent the flu. The CDC recommends a flu vaccine every year for everyone 6 months and older. Your doctor’s office and local pharmacies, including CVS and Walgreens, can easily provide one. For more information on this year’s flu vaccine and where to get it, visit the CDC’s 2014-2015 Influenza Season website.
Wash your hands — a lot: Regularly washing your hands with warm, soapy water is the quickest and easiest way to prevent cold and flu symptoms. Experts recommend washing your hands as much as you can stand, especially if you come in to contact with people who are contagious. If you can’t get to a sink, an alcohol-based hand-sanitizer is another good option to kill cold and flu germs. Amazingly, about 80 percent of contagious diseases are transmitted by touch. So wash those hands!
Cover Your Nose and Mouth: Cold and flu germs are spread by coughing, sneezing, or unclean hands. So another very simple thing to do to stop the spread the of cold and flu germs is to cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough. Try coughing or sneezing into your upper sleeve or elbow, not your hands.
If You’re Sick, Stay Home: It may not be easy to take a sick day. But if you have a cold or flu, you should. Pushing yourself when you’re sick, makes it harder for your body to fight off a virus. You could also spread cold and flu germs to other people, which won’t make you very popular in the office anyway! So when you’re sick, stay home, rest, and recover. Your body – and your coworkers – will thank you.
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