Staying cold-free this winter
Did you know that, having a cold is the most common illness among humans? It does not necessarily occur as a result of wet hair, stress, cold feet or bad weather. The fact of the matter is that anyone can catch a cold, especially when the immune system is weak.
Remember, there’s a difference between a cold and the flu. The flu lasts longer than a cold and can have you lying in bed for several days or lead to complications like pneumonia or even death. If you’re running a fever, you most likely have the flu and need to take extra care.
With the weather forecast at a low, you may be more susceptible to falling ill. Don’t let colds and flu stop you this winter though. Follow these tips and hints and you can continue to get more out of life despite the weather forecast.
Strengthen your immune system
Research suggests that by working out and making your heart pump a little faster you strengthen your immune system.
If you’re already sick, the general rule of thumb is that you can continue to do so if the symptoms are experienced above the neck, such as stuffy noses and sore throats. If, however, you have a temperature and are experiencing aches and pains in your body you should rest and give the gym a skip.
Don’t worry, be happy. It is a well-known fact that a positive attitude can boost your immune system.
Properly wash your hands
Hands are described as a germ factory for a reason, so be sure to wash your hands several times throughout the day using a sanitizer. Warm soap and water work too but make sure you don’t rush the process and wash your hands for at least 20-seconds to kill all germs.
Use a paper towel to dry your hands and close the tap with it so that you don’t come into contact with germs once again after washing your hands. Keep your hands away from your nose and mouth as much as possible so that they don’t attract additional germs. And if you need to sneeze, try to do so in the crook of your arm so that the germs on your hands don’t come into contact with your nose. Try and eat with a knife and fork so that germs are not transferred from your hands to your food.
Colds and flu are spread by viruses which can easily spread from surface to person and person to person. For this reason it’s a good idea to carry an alcohol-based cleanser with you to sterilise any surfaces that you may believe to be putting your health at risk. Antiseptic wipes should also be used to cleanse desktops and phones regularly. Always dispose of used tissues as they are the ultimate germ carriers.
Eat and sleep well
Get at least eight to ten hours sleep a night to prevent your immune system from weakening and making you more susceptible to colds and flu. Eating large quantities of fresh fruit and vegetables supports your immune system so make sure your diet is designed to protect you. Think before you dip and be wary of sharing chip dips with sick friends as they may harbour unwanted germs. It is also very important to drink a lot of fluids.
While it may seem perfectly obvious, stay away from people displaying symptoms such as coughing and sneezing.