Muscle pain, nasal congestion, chills, sore throat. If you’ve ever been sick with the flu then you recognize these symptoms. The problem with getting sick with the flu is that it’s far more dangerous than your common cold and can even lead to death.
The latest numbers from the CDC show that between 291,000 and 646,000 people die across the globe from seasonal influenza-related respiratory illnesses.
Reports are calling for an even worse flu season this year. And that’s alarming since in the 2016-2017 season, influenza-like-illness was at or above baseline for 17 consecutive weeks. Activity peaked nationally in February.
That means there’s still time to get sick.
Other than the important preventive step of getting a flu shot, here are measures you can take to ensure you’re safe this flu season.
Stave Off All Germs
The leading way to become sick with the flu is through germs. Even if you keep a distance or never even interact with someone who is infected, you could still end up sick. That’s because the virus can spread easily through coughs and sneezes and reach up to six feet away. Think of all those times you walk through the grocery store or on the sidewalk and pass someone coughing? Kill these germs as best as possible by constantly cleaning all surfaces with disinfectant wipes, using hand sanitizer and washing your hands throughout the day.
Keep a Distance
Since the flu expected to be worse this year, and for many already in full swing, it’s best to protect yourself by cancelling plans and avoiding large crowds to decrease the chances you’ll catch the virus. This is especially true if you live in an area that’s already battling high flu counts.
Stock Your First Aid Kit
First aid kits are a great tool in an emergency and to help with injuries and wounds. But they should also be stocked with items to help stave off germs during these critical flu months. Consider adding hand sanitizers, face masks, extra tissues, latex gloves and medications that help with cold symptoms.
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