You — yes, you! — can help keep people from getting sick this flu season. How? It's not too hard. Just take these steps:
You may have heard all this before — probably from your mom — but flu season is a great time to actually start doing them. By following these tips, you might be able to keep yourself from getting sick and prevent germs from spreading around and making other people sick.
Do you notice something about all three of the tips above? All of them involve your hands. That's how a lot of germs get in our bodies in the first place — whether it's a cold, chickenpox, or the flu. Germs get on our hands and we put our hands in our eyes, noses, and, especially, our mouths.
Sometimes you just can't help it. You have to pick up your sandwich, floss your teeth, and do stuff like that. Our hands get plenty of opportunities to touch our eyes and noses, too. Don't even get me started on nose-picking. I think you can guess that you shouldn't be doing that during flu season either (or anytime — ew!)
The best habit of all these good habits is hand washing. When you wash your hands, you rinse away germs that you might have picked up here or there. When you do this before you eat, for instance, you reduce the chance that those germs will end up in your body, where they can make you sick.
Sure, you know how to wash your hands. But check your technique against these recommendations:
Let's add a final step 5 since it's flu season: Tell a friend to wash up, too!
Reviewed by: Elana Pearl Ben-Joseph, MD
Date reviewed: September 2013
|Influenza Website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) The CDC's site has up-to-date information on flu outbreaks, immunizations, symptoms, prevention, and more.|
|Why Do I Need to Wash My Hands? Washing your hands is the best way to stop germs from spreading. Learn all about the best way to wash your hands in this article for kids.|
|Flu Center The flu can make you sick for a week or more. Find out how to get protected from the influenza virus.|
|The Flu: Should You Go to School? Stay home or go to school? That's what you are probably wondering if you have the flu. Find out more.|
|Who Needs a Flu Shot? Just about everybody needs a flu shot. Find out more in this article for kids.|
|Flu The flu is a virus that can make you sick for a week or longer. Find out more in this article for kids.|
What to expect when coming to Akron Children's
For healthcare providers and nurses
Residency & Fellowships, Medical Students, Nursing and Allied Health
For prospective employees and career-seekers
Our online community that provides inspirational stories and helpful information.