It seems like the flu is running rampant through cities and towns all across the states. Unfortunately, it seems the CDC is reporting that the flu vaccine this year missed the mark, and there is little to no protection from the strain currently running amok. There have already been reports of at least 15 deaths attributed to the flu this season, and we have not yet reached the peak of influenza season which is somewhere in February/March. As you venture out into the world, be sure to protect yourself from the flu!
1) Hand washing. Good hand washing is your number one protection against viruses. Wash your hands often and well with warm soapy water. Be sure to scrub under fingernails and past your wrists.
2) Avoid shopping and outings at peak hours. To avoid large crowds and potential germs, avoid doing your necessary shopping when the crowds and the potential for flu transmission is the highest.
3) Wipe down carts before using. Toss a travel size packet of Clorox wipes in your purse or pocket and wipe down those surfaces that are frequently touched by the public.
4) Use a corner of your jacket or a paper towel to open doors, especially to restrooms. Anywhere that fingers linger, so does the flu virus.
5) Keep your hands away from your face. Transmission of the flu virus is often caused by hands to the nose and mouth area after touching infected surfaces. Keep your hands away from your face and wash them frequently.
6) Stay away from that Cold and Flu aisle! If you must venture into the Cold and Flu medicine aisle for some reason, leave your kids at home or in sight off the aisle, cover your mouth, and touch as little as possible. Remember that sick people head right to that aisle and pick up boxes to read while coughing and sneezing. It is a cauldron for viruses.
7) Avoid public indoor play areas whenever possible. Kids are germ traders. It is best to avoid arcades and indoor play centers during the peak of flu season. All the precautions in the world are not going to help if your child sticks an infected toy in his/her mouth.