After a long, chaotic year of constant news about COVID-19, many are more than ready to forget about it and move on. But now is actually the time when COVID, The Flu, and other seasonal maladies are more likely to surge and to hit hardest.
On the one hand, don’t let an exclusive focus on COVID-19 let you lose sight of how serious The Flu can be during the cold season. On the other hand, realize that catching The Flu or The Common Cold makes you more vulnerable to COVID-19 as well – and the same steps that help lower the risk of the one lower the risk of the other.
Here are 5 ways to prepare early for Flu season in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak.
1. Get Your Annual Flu Shot
There is a lot of anticipation concerning the upcoming release of a COVID-19 vaccine, but you don’t have to wait for that to prepare for cold weather. Getting your annual Flu shot can lower your chances of getting the Flu by 50% or more.
Less than half of US adults get their annual influenza vaccine, and that contributes to the number of Flu cases each year. Many think these vaccines aren’t safe or aren’t effective enough, but they ARE SAFE and being only half as likely to get a nasty case of the Flu IS SIGNIFICANT!
2. Maintain Good Hygiene
While there is no way to 100% guarantee you won’t catch The Flu and won’t catch COVID, maintaining good hygiene drastically improves your chances.
Take two showers a day. Wash your hands frequently – before and after eating. Carry and use plenty of hand sanitizer. Change clothes after coming back home and wash clothes daily. Keeping your body and your living environment as clean and sanitized as possible is a big factor in your favor.
3. Manage Your Circadian Rhythms
When you fail to get quality sleep each night, it’s going to catch up with you sooner or later – and probably sooner. This is especially true in the Fall and Winter when your body must expend a lot of energy just to keep itself warm.
Most people need 7 or 8 hours of good sleep per day, and “early to bed, early to rise” really works! It tends to keep your “circadian rhythms” in balance.
4. Follow An Immune-bolstering Diet
What you eat also impacts your ability to fight off The Flu. Fresh fruits and vegetables provide invaluable micronutrients that fortify your system and help you cope better with the cold.
Good gut health is key, and foods like flaxseed and oatmeal – high in prebiotics, can help. Spices like turmeric offer antibacterial effects, while salmon and ginger provide immune-boosting antioxidants. The list could go on.
5. Get Regular, Measured Exercise
Another way to lower your risk of getting sick is to stay active. Regular, moderate-intensity workouts are well worthwhile. They strengthen your immune system and make your body stronger overall.
But don’t overdo it. A daily jog or 20 to 30 minutes of vigorous exercise is enough for most people. If you overstress yourself physically, it could actually make it easier for you to catch The Flu.
To learn more about how you can prepare for The Flu season, even in the midst of the COVID-19 situation, contact The ER On Soncy in Amarillo, Texas.