Avoiding Winter Colds & Flu
Avoiding illness this winter may seem impossible, especially if you have kids in daycare, are frequently visiting hospitals or doctors’ offices or have coworkers coughing next to you. If on top of it, you’re stressed and tired, you’re only more susceptible to colds and flu. Caregivers need to stay healthy, so here are some tips to skipping the winter sickness this year.
6 Health-saving tips
- Wash Your Hands: It’s simple, really. According to the CDC, washing your hands is one of the most effective ways to prevent illness. Also, avoid using communal objects (pens, pencils, grocery carts) or wipe them down before use.
- Avoid Cramped Spaces: The main reason we get sick more often in the winter is because we’re all cooped up inside together, on trains or subways, in our houses, at museums or other indoor attractions and at work. While many of these situations are unavoidable, it might be best to not get too close.
- Drink Fluids: Being dehydrated may increase your susceptibility to illness and drinking water may in fact wash germs down to your stomach where they can’t survive.
- Get a Flu Shot: While it’s best to get your flu shot in the fall, the flu can hit people as late as May, so it’s not too late to get one even in January or February. People spending time around sick relatives or young children really shouldn’t skip a flu shot.
- Take Vitamins: While herbal remedies and natural vitamins might not prevent you from getting sick, they can’t hurt. Vitamin C, Zinc, Elderberry, Quercetin, probiotics and others may help boost your immune system or act as an anti-viral. Many of these come naturally in fruits and vegetables, so maintaining a healthy diet is the easiest way to incorporate these and fight illness.
- Stay Rested: After washing your hands, sleep is your next best defense mechanism. A study performed by Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh found that those study participants who slept eight hours or more at night were less likely to get a cold than those who slept less.
Share your healthful hints
How do you keep sickness at bay? Share your tips, hints and suggestions with fellow readers in our comments section below.