Top 3 Tips for Staying Healthy During Cold and Flu Season
With fall just around the corner, the time has come to start preparing for cold and flu season. By taking the necessary precautions, you can help protect yourself and others from these common illnesses. Read on to find out the top three things you can do to stay healthy during cold and flu season.
- Get vaccinated for the flu
One of the best ways to protect against the flu is by getting vaccinated. The flu vaccine not only reduces your chances of getting sick but also helps to prevent the spread of the virus to your family, friends and work colleagues. Speak with a healthcare provider to determine the most suitable vaccine for you and your family members, as each vaccine poses different risks based on your age and current health condition. Additionally, it’s important to consult a provider to ensure that you are not allergic to any of the vaccine ingredients before going in for a flu vaccine appointment.
Possible side effects from a flu shot include soreness or redness around the injection site, mild headache, muscle aches and fatigue. These side effects typically subside within a day or two, and in many cases, patients experience little to no side effects at all. After receiving the flu vaccine, it will take a couple of weeks for your body to build immunity. That’s why it is recommended to get your vaccination in September or October, so your body has time to build immunity before cold and flu season really kicks into gear.
- Practice good hygiene
Another essential step in staying healthy is practicing good hygiene. This includes washing your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap is not available. Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose and mouth, as these are entry points for germs. Additionally, cover your mouth with your elbow when you cough or sneeze to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets to those around you.
- Boost your immune system
A strong immune system can greatly reduce your susceptibility to the common cold and the flu. To maintain a strong immune system, get plenty of sleep, eat a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables, and exercise regularly. It’s also recommended to try to manage stress, as chronic stress weakens the immune system.
To further enhance your immune system, consider incorporating immune-boosting supplements like vitamin C or zinc into your daily routine. If you have underlying health conditions or take prescription medications, speak with a health provider before taking any new multivitamins or supplements.
Midwest Express Clinic is here to help you stay healthy and protected this fall and winter, with flu vaccinations and treatment available seven days a week. To find a clinic nearest you, visit midwestexpressclinic.com/locations.