Nobody likes getting sick — and it’s even worse when coughing, sneezing and headaches lead to lost time at work. Unfortunately, it only takes one person to get a large group of people sick, so it’s important to understand the nature of colds and the flu. Colds and flu look similar, too, but Influenza, or the “flu,” is a contagious respiratory illness. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can even be fatal. Older adults, young children, and people with certain health conditions are at high risk for serious flu complications, including bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions.With flu season here, prevention is your best defense against the fever, body aches, and cough that the virus can bring on.
1.Arm yourself with a vaccine.:-
The flu vaccine can help prevent flu. This is especially important for those over 65 years old, as well as anyone with a weakened immune or respiratory system(patients suffering from Diabetes,tuberculosis,AIDS,Renal Failure,etc ), nursing home residents, and health care workers who have regular contact with patients. Pregnant women whose last two trimesters fall during flu season might consider getting the shot as well.
2.Stay at least three feet away from anyone who’s coughing or sneezing.:-
The flu virus is a parasite that hangs around in respiratory secretions that travel through the air in small droplets; when projected by a cough or sneeze, they can fly about three feet before gravity takes over. A flu patient who’s actively projecting these droplets by coughing or sneezing can contaminate the air you breathe. There’s no practical way to assess whether someone has a benign nose tickle, a cold, or the flu, so it’s best to keep your distance from anyone with suspicious symptoms.
3.Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Simply touching a contaminated surface won’t give you the flu, since the virus doesn’t infect the skin — it has to make it to a mucosal membrane in your mouth or nose to cause an infection. But you risk getting sick when you touch an infected surface and transfer the virus to your face. Get in the habit of bumping elbows with others rather than shaking hands.
4.Clean your hands.
Touch a light switch? Communal keyboard? Water cooler? Whether you’re in a public place or in your home, it’s smart to wash your hands after handling any commonly-touched surfaces using soap and water afterward. Lather up for at least 20 seconds, then rinse under water, and air dry or pat dry with a clean towel, . In the absence of a sink, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
5.Practice good health habits.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home or work , especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.