BY NURSE AKINGBOHUNGBE OLUWATOSIN
The rainy season is here again and most people are cooped up inside, often times sharing space with others who may be sneezing and sniffling. The Cold and Flu also represents the running nose and Catarrh common during the rainy season. You may not be able to completely prevent colds and flu this time of year, but by practicing good hygiene and being careful to avoid cold germs, you may escape cold and flu season unscathed. Here are some useful tips to stay healthy this period:
Wash Hands Frequently
One of the most effective ways to prevent colds and the flu is simply washing your hands properly and frequently. This will help to get rid of cold germs you pick up from doorknobs and stair rails, and keep you from getting them into your body.
Wipe Down Germy Areas
It’s probably common sense not to shake a sick person’s hands when you want to prevent a cold but that’s far from the only place that you can pick up cold germs. So take some time when you clean up your office or home to wipe down germy areas – light switches, doorknobs, your phone, your computer, and your TV remote. Minimizing exposure to germs can help prevent colds and the flu.
Whether you’re nibbling on finger foods or you’re a nail biter, your hands have a habit of finding their way into your mouth, not to mention your nose, and eyes -all areas where germs can enter the body. To prevent cold and flu viruses, don’t touch “your eyes, nose, or mouth with your hands”. This is how germs get inside your body and grow into an upper respiratory infection.
Drink Plenty of Fluids
Drinking plenty of water boosts a particular immune response to enable your body to better fight the viruses. Also, avoid caffeinated drinks. Shoot for six to eight glasses of water per day, more if the weather is hot.
Exercise to Strengthen Your Immunity
Exercise not only makes you feel great and helps you stay fit, but it also boosts your immune system and can help prevent cold and flu viruses from making you sick. Additionally, warding off extra weight is important for overall health.
Buy a Bottle of Hand Sanitizer
Let’s face it; you can’t always get to a sink when you need to wash germs off of your hands. So keeping a bottle of hand sanitizer handy is a good idea to help disinfect hands and prevent flu and cold viruses.
Eat Healthy Foods and Fruits
A healthy diet can strengthen your immune system and help you prevent flu and cold viruses from attacking. Fruits, vegetables, low-fat proteins, and complex carbohydrates are the keys to good nutrition that will stoke your immune system.
Get Plenty of Sleep
Getting enough shut-eye each night (sleep) is essential for healthy immune function, insufficient sleep or poor sleep quality is associated with lowered immune function. So that means catching enough zzz’s at night can help prevent cold and flu viruses from slowing you down.