With the holiday season right around the corner, health departments are encouraging people to “share the joy, not the flu.”
Health officials say that the 2013 flu season is already underway, and they encourage residents to get a flu shot before Thanksgiving. Last year’s flu season peaked in late December, but each year the occurrence of the peak is unpredictable.
The State Health Department says Holiday gatherings can bring together people who may be especially vulnerable to the flu virus. People who travel and college students who return home for the holidays can be exposed to viruses from other parts of the state, the country, or the world, and can pick up and spread the illness from wherever they’ve been.
In addition to getting a flu shot, health departments recommend:
- Wash hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Stay home when sick.
- Cover a cough or sneeze with the upper sleeve. If using a tissue, throw it away after one use.
- Use your own drinking cups and straws.
- Eat nutritious meals and get plenty of rest
- Frequently clean commonly touched surfaces like door knobs, faucets, refrigerator, etc.