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Take Care of Your Family Without Getting Sick

Woman blowing noseIs this going to be the year you manage to avoid that annoying cold and prevent illness? No promises, but with a few helpful tips, you’ll be better equipped to stay healthy. As a parent, illness seems to come at all the wrong times — and hangs on. You don’t have time to “rest up and get better.”

Once fall hits, that’s when those pesky germs traditionally attack around us. Children are exposed to germs on a daily basis at school, whether by inefficient handwashing, failing to effectively cover their noses when they sneeze and every parent’s favorite: the wiping of a runny nose with bare hands. So by proxy, colds and flu can be a family affair.

While germ exposure may help to build up our immune systems, we all have different levels of inherent immunity. Our immunity also depends on whether we’re physically or emotionally stressed, tired and whether our immune system is compromised by other health factors as well. Even if a household member gets a cold, it doesn’t have to be inevitable that you get sick as well. Here are six tips to help prevent illness:

  1. Everyone: Get Some Sleep!

    As hard (and lovely) as it may sound for an adult, we all need 8-10 hours of sleep a night. A well-rested body is a strong, resistant body.

  2. Get Your Flu Shot

    Avoiding the flu will help you remain strong against other germs such as cold germs — not to mention the flu germs themselves.

  3. Eat Right

    Remember the old wives’ tale to feed a cold and starve a fever? While it sounds OK if you’re on the cold end of that saying, fresh fruits and vegetables as part of a healthy daily diet help build your immune system all year long. Remember, good health supports your immune system — it’s more of a marathon than a sprint.

  4. Stock Up On Hand Sanitizer & Lots of Tissue

    It’s hard to avoid a sick child; obviously they need their mom and dad. Remember to go over a few rules (good for everyone) including when sneezing, cover the mouth and nose with a tissue or sneeze into crook of the elbow and never, ever reuse that tissue. Use sanitizer after sneezing if you are not close to a sink with soap, which is always best.

  5. More Water, Please

    Staying well hydrated will always be top on every “to avoid…” list. Staying hydrated flushes your system as well as keeps you hydrated in case you do fall ill.

  6. Take A Sick Day!
    Seriously. Knowingly going to work or school sick accounts for the spread of illness in school and workplaces. Sometimes, it’s okay to say you can’t make it in. Remember: you are potentially harming the most vulnerable among us including pregnant women, children and the elderly by spreading your germs. So do your good act for the day — it’ll benefit you and the rest of us.

With a few fail-safes, you can manage to avoid illness or reduce the overall impact and rebound much quicker.

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