Fever. Cough. Sore throat. Stuffy nose. Achy body. Yuck. No one wants to get the flu.
Luckily, we can do more than just hope and wish and keep our fingers crossed when flu season comes around. This year, try these 8 tips to avoid the flu.
#1. Get a flu shot to avoid the flu
A yearly flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, missed school/work, doctor visits, and hospitalization for the flu. Studies have shown that flu vaccine reduces children’s risk of flu-related pediatric intensive care unit admission by as much as 74% and flu-related hospitalization in adults by up to 71%.
#2. Wash your hands to avoid the flu
Scrub hard for 20 seconds or more with soap and water. Get under your nails and between your fingers. Wash several times a day, especially after visits to doctor’s offices, schools, and other places where a potentially higher frequency of germ passing takes place. Hand sanitizer works if you do not have access to soap and water.
#3. Steer clear of sick people to avoid the flu
This may not be easy if your line of work has you in constant contact with the general public. But you can move away from the sniffling person on the bus or your feverish co-worker. If you walk past someone who is coughing, breathe out while you do. This can help keep you from breathing in their germs as you pass.
#4. Sanitize your surroundings to avoid the flu
Regularly sanitize the railings, doorknobs, and light switches in your home or work space. Not everyone who comes into your space will have the same hand-washing standards, so if you sanitize regularly, you’ll protect yourself against the germs that make their way in from outside. Carrying a small pack of sanitized wipes in your pocket or your purse can give you a defense against germs on public doorknobs and railings.
#5. Get rest to avoid the flu
Sleep helps your immune system stay strong. You’ll need that to fight those cold and flu viruses that get past all your other defenses.
#6. Go alcohol-free to avoid the flu
Alcohol interrupts healthy sleep cycles and dehydrates your body, both of which can affect your immune system’s ability to fight off the flu.
#7. Drink tea to avoid the flu
Tea isn’t just comforting, it can also help fight off colds and flu. Breathing in the steam from hot tea stimulates the cilia in your nose to help move out germs. And if you add lemon and honey to the tea, it’ll thin your mucous and provide antibacterial benefits.
#8. Practice healthy choices to avoid the flu
Keeping your immune system strong with a generally healthy lifestyle can go a long way toward preventing and fighting the flu. Eat whole, unprocessed foods and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Refrain from smoking. Exercise regularly, and practice relaxation to keep your stress level low. The occasional massage can also aid in the prevention of illness by keeping your circulation moving and stimulating your lymphatic system. How’s that for an excuse to get a massage?
Do you qualify for a clinical research study?
At Precision Research Institute, we’re currently seeking participants ages 18 to 65 for a study for the treatment of acute uncomplicated seasonal influenza. To find out if you qualify, or for more information on who we are and what we do, please give us a call, browse our website, or fill in our contact form.
We have locations in San Diego and Chula Vista.