Avoiding Germs this Holiday Season
Germs are everywhere, and with the holiday season, they can feel as if they are unavoidable, from cramped airplanes or buses during travel to hugging all those friends and family at parties. The holidays conveniently fall in the middle of cold and flu season, and it seems as though almost daily you run into one or more people with a cough and runny nose. Getting sick can completely derail holiday plans, but if you take the right steps, you can help protect yourself and your family.
- Wash Your Hands. This one should go without saying, but the best way to prevent the spread of flu germs is to properly wash your hands. The CDC recommends washing for at least 20 seconds with soap and clean running water to best fight germs.
- Keep Warm and Dry. Dressing warm with layers and gloves, hats, scarves and waterproof boots will keep you comfortable and your immune system strong. While this tip may not prevent you from catching an actual virus, the temperature of your body determines how vulnerable you become, as viruses thrive and replicate faster in colder temperatures.
- Manage Stress. While stress is virtually unavoidable during the holidays, managing it will help you stay healthy. When you are stressed, your immune system can become less effective, making you more susceptible to illness. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take some time to yourself, find support, take some time with friends or loved ones, and get plenty of rest.
- Get Your Vaccines. Vaccines are an important defense against various diseases, some of which can be deadly. One important annual vaccine everyone who is 6 months or older should receive is the flu shot. Even if it may not completely guarantee you from getting the flu, the vaccine helps to “train” your immune system, so even in an instance of infection, you are less likely to be hospitalized because of the virus.
- Eat Healthy & Stay Active. Eating fruits and vegetables rich in nutrients will help lower your risk of certain diseases, and staying active at least 2.5 hours per week will keep your body running as it should. Eating too much fat, salt, and sugar and being sedentary can wear you down, making you an easier target for germs.
Following the right precautions can help to keep you healthy throughout the holiday season. However, if you do get sick, visit us today to discuss the best treatment to get you back into the holiday spirit in no time.