Everyone is getting into the sharing spirit, but one thing you don’t want to share are your germs. Most viruses spread from person to person through droplets, such as when a person coughs or sneezes. Viruses also spread by touching a surface that is contaminated with these droplets and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth. So as we enter the cold and flu season, here are some suggestions to avoid illness:
- First, get your flu shot. Still haven’t done that yet? We’re entering peak flu season, so now is the time to protect yourself.
- Stay home when you’re sick. We understand your job is important, but going to work when you’re sick just spreads germs to your coworkers and customers. By staying home, you limit that risk.
- If you have flu-like symptoms, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone (without the use of fever-reducing medicine).
- Wipe down common surfaces with disinfectant. Things like door knobs, phones and keyboards are touched frequently and should be cleaned regularly.
- Have good hand hygiene. Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly, and if water is not available use an alcohol-based hand rub. This is important because you can transfer germs up to 24 hours before you start feeling sick. Washing regularly can limit the spread.
- Keep a box of tissues nearby and cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze and use a new tissue each time.
- If you think you may have the flu, seek care from a doctor as soon as possible, preferably within 48 hours of your first symptoms. They might prescribe an antiviral medication that can lessen the severity and duration of the flu.
- cold flu sick