Sunday February 9, 2020
We are in the heart of flu season and it seems that every year is getting worse. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there have been over 120,000 people hospitalized and 6,000 people have died this flu season.
But while it may seem like you are constantly hearing dire news of new strains and new viruses, there are still some things that you can do to prepare your household for the flu:
- Probably the easiest way that you can help get everyone ready for the flu season is with an annual flu vaccination. Many pharmacies are encouraging people to do this by offering the shot for free. Almost any pharmacy, including the ones at “big box stores” will have them readily available. Unfortunately, it is impossible to get one shot that vaccinates against all strains of the flu. Scientists try to predict the strains that will be most active and that is the vaccine that is offered. However, it is not a perfect preventative, just a good first line of defense.
- Next, you need to remember to constantly wash your hands. Germs are passed through contact, so you need to be especially careful. If you can’t wash your hands regularly, be sure to carry hand sanitizer in your purse or bookbag.
- A healthy diet is always a good idea, but during flu season it is very important. If you eat foods rich in vitamins and minerals, such as fruits and vegetables, you can strengthen your immune system. It is these natural immunities that will help you fight off the virus.
- Finally, an important rule many people forget is to just simply stay at home. If your children are sick, don’t send them to school. If you or your spouse is sick, don’t go to work. If you do, you will not only be miserable, lengthening your illness and making it hard to recover, but you will also infect others. If more people would stay isolated when they become ill with the flu, it would be much harder for the disease to spread.
The flu is nothing to laugh at. It is a serious disease that infects millions of people each year. But it is not just a few days of discomfort and illness. The flu can lead to hospitalization and even death, especially for the very young, the old, and those who have weakened immune systems.