Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Don't Get Caught With the Flu

Did you know that someone can spread the flu before they even know that they have it?

Most healthy adults may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5 to 7 days after becoming sick. Children may pass the virus for longer than 7 days.

Avoid Catching the Flu

  • Get a flu shot.
  • Avoid the spread of germs. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. Wash your hands often with soap and water. Avoid touching your nose, eyes and mouth. Clean and disinfect surfaces that may have germs.
  • Keep your distance from those who are sick. In waiting rooms, sit at least three feet away from people who are coughing.
  • Practice healthy habits. Get plenty of sleep. Exercise. Eat nutritious foods.

Avoid Spreading the Flu

To prevent the transmission of all respiratory infections, including influenza, take the following infection control measures:
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
  • Dispose of your Kleenex. Use the nearest waste receptacle to dispose of the tissue after use.
  • Wash your hands. Wash your hands with non-antimicrobial soap and water, an alcohol-based hand rub, or an antiseptic hand wash after having contact with respiratory secretions and contaminated objects/materials.
  • Stay at home. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people with influenza-like illness remain at home until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever (100 degrees F or 37.8 degrees C) or signs of a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications.
See your doctor for mild-to moderate flu symptoms rather than visiting the ER.

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