How to Help Avoid Getting Sick this Winter

This is the time of year where the weather gets colder, we spend lots of time indoors with friends and loved ones, and we want to avoid getting sick at all costs!

Although it can’t be guaranteed that you won’t pick something up, there are many things that you can do to reduce your risk of getting sick (or of passing something on to someone else).

  1. WASH YOUR HANDS REGULARLY – This is by far one of the most important ways of preventing passing along bugs – both respiratory and tummy. Use soap, warm water, and rub all aspects of your hands together for at least 20 seconds.
  2. GET YOUR FLU SHOT – It is safe, it is free, and most importantly it is effective! It is also readily available from your Nurse Practitioner, doctor, pharmacist or local public health unit, so make an appointment or pop in today if you haven’t already.
  3. COVER YOUR MOUTH WHEN YOU COUGH/SNEEZE – Respiratory viruses, like the flu, spread through droplets that enter your body through your nose, mouth and eyes. So protect those around you by using the sleeve on the inside of your elbow to stop those droplets from flying all over the people and surfaces around you.
  4. DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE – As mentioned above, viruses mainly enter the body through the eyes, notes and mouth, so keep your hands away from these areas.
  5. GET PLENTY OF REST – Not getting enough sleep and being over-tired can make you more prone to getting sick, as your immune system also gets exhausted. So get to bed on time so you can wake up well rested with an immune system that is ready to take on whatever the day brings!

by Julia Hutton, UGFHT Nurse Practitioner

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