Every winter we dread potentially catching a cold or getting the flu. Influenza, a respiratory illness caused by flu viruses, spreads mainly through respiratory droplets of coughs and sneezes. Symptoms of the flu include sore throat, high fever, headaches, cough, and muscle pain.
So you’re probably wondering, “what can I do to prevent this nasty virus?” Contrary to the belief that going outside will cause sickness, experts advise individuals to get outside and take walks on nice days to avoid staying inside where all the germs live. Also, as your mother probably tells you frequently, wash your hands often. Individuals do not even realize all the germ-infested surfaces they come in contact with on a daily basis including computer keyboards and door handles. Wash your hands often with antibacterial soap to prevent catching the flu or any other nasty virus.
In addition, everyone should get the flu vaccine, available through a shot or nasal spray. Any doctor’s office or pharmacy normally offers the flu vaccine. Mild symptoms such as soreness and headache could arise from the vaccine; however, mild symptoms seem much better than the flu.
Eating healthy can also help prevent the flu. If an individual does catch the flu, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables with vitamins will prepare the body to fight off the illness. Vitamins A, C, and E will be useful during sick times. In addition to eating well, individuals should regularly exercise to keep the body healthy.
Lastly, individuals need to remember the importance of sleep. With finals coming up, it seems easy to be content with staying up all night to study; however, in order for our bodies to perform well, we need sleep to recharge our bodies and keep our immune system strong and ready to fight any potential illnesses. Take care of your body this winter to avoid getting sick!
By: Melissa Castrogiovanni