Well, it’s flu season. The trouble with the flu is that it’s an ever-changing virus. Every year it’s different, that’s why we can get it over and over. It changes just enough to get by our bodies’ defenses. We make vaccines every year, but they’re ineffective the next year. A flu, while simple to treat, can bring a person down for several days. Here are some basic tips for your family to avoid the flu.
1. Wash your hands
This can’t be stated enough. Washing your hands is the single most important thing you can do to prevent the spread of any disease. Getting them wet doesn’t cut, either. You have to use soap. Sing the song “Row, row, row your boat” to make sure you wash long enough.
2. Get a flu shot
The CDC recommends that everyone who is at least six months old get a flu vaccine each year, but it’s especially important for children and the elderly (who have weakened immune systems). The flu shot is extremely effective. Even if you get the flu, it helps reduce the severity of your symptoms.
3. Don’t touch other people
Obviously you can’t avoid contact is everyone, but only touch the people you have to. On average, people touch their own faces twice a minute, so touching someone else is basically the same as touching them inside their body. Avoid what contact you can during this season.
4. Disinfect your surfaces
Germs can live on a surface for as long as a day, so it’s important you disinfect public surfaces. But this means more than just your countertops. You can disinfect phones, computers, keyboards and toys. Make sure you wash your dishes in the hottest water you can manage (dishwashers are great).
5. Cough into your elbow
At one time, we were all taught to cough into our hands, but that’s bad advice now, because we use our hands to touch basically everything. Teach your kids to cough into the inside of their elbow. Sure, they’ll get germs on their sleeve, but they won’t spread them.
6. Avoid sick people
If someone in your home comes down with the flu, quarantine them as reasonably as you can. Limit all contact, especially touching. It’s for the best that skip goodnight hugs until everyone is feeling 100%.
Did anyone in your family have the flu this year?
Written by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the Woombie Baby Swaddle
Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.
Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.
Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!
For more information, visit www.woombie.com.
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