Good Health Habits Can Stop the Spread of Germs

Photo: washing hands under running waterAt this time of year, it is more important than ever to continue good practices to help prevent the spread of contagious illnesses, such as the flu. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers a list of good habits to protect yourself from the flu and other illnesses, including the following:

  • Get a flu shot! Proper vaccination is the best protection against the flu. Faculty and staff can receive the vaccination at the Barnes Center at the Arch pharmacy until Feb. 28.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
  • If possible, stay home from work, school and errands when you are sick. This will help prevent spreading your illness to others.
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.
  • Wash your hands often to help protect you from germs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated. Because of this, please avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious food.

“The most common symptoms associated with flu are congestion, fever, headache, fatigue, sore throat, and body aches and chills. If you begin experiencing these symptoms, rest, fluids and fever-reducing medication will help manage the symptoms. While most flu illnesses resolve on their own, if you’re experiencing severe illness or have concerns, seek care promptly,” says Dr. Karen Nardella.

Faculty and staff who experience flu-like symptoms should consult their primary care physician.