By: Mission Healthy Living
October 15, 2019
Last year, the CDC estimated that there were up to 42 million cases of the flu in the U.S. That means one in eight people ended up with the flu last year, and this flu season in not expected to be any better.
Montgomery County is offering free flu shots to county residents, and shots are available at Community Health and Dental Care, a non-profit health center in Pottstown that provides medical and dental care to everyone regardless of insurance status. The CDC recommends that individuals be vaccinated by the end of October to give the vaccine time to take effect before flu season peaks.
If you think you might have influenza, visit a healthcare provider immediately. Antiviral drugs work best within two days of symptoms developing. People with symptoms should stay home from work or school in order to prevent the spread of illness.
But it’s not just flu you have to watch out for, other illnesses are rampant during the winter. To keep them all at bay, here are a few tips and tricks.
- Wash Up: It’s always a good idea to wash your hands frequently, but it’s especially important during cold and flu season to keep yourself and those around you free of illness. This 11-step guide will walk you through the particulars. While washing is best, hand sanitizers can be an effective alternative: keep a bottle in the car or at the office for times when a trip to the sink is inconvenient.
- Clean House: Don’t leave the germs anywhere to hide. Wipe down often touched surfaces like doorknobs, keyboards, and phones.
- Get Moving: Keeping active throughout the winter can give your immune system a boost and help ward off other common winter maladies such as arthritis and seasonal depression.
- Sneeze Better: Sneeze into a clean tissue each time. If there are no tissues at hand, you may have to use your sleeve. Here’s another handy guide.
- Eat Right: Winter’s the time for baked goods and heavy meals, but try to keep some healthy recipes on deck to keep your mind and body functioning in top form.