The flu virus can affect anybody, even those who lead very healthy lifestyles. This is especially true during peak influenza season, which is typically between the months of December to February and May to July in Singapore.
This virus travels through the air, and may be transmitted from person to person directly by simply inhaling droplets from an infected person’s cough or sneeze. You can also pick up germs from shared objects or in public places.
Everybody, especially your kids, is susceptible to the flu
Common flu symptoms
Symptoms of the flu are usually quick to manifest. These include:
- High fever and chills
- A cough accompanied by a sore throat
- Muscle pain
- Nasal congestion and sneezing
- Fatigue and a feeling of weakness
Because it is highly contagious, flu prevention is very important. Mums and dads must take measures to protect your children and yourselves from it. Here are 10 tips for effective flu prevention in your family.
10 tips to protect your family against the flu
1. Keep hand sanitiser handy
There will be times when hand washing is just not possible. For situations like these, make sure to keep a small bottle of alcohol or hand sanitiser with you. This gives you a quick and easy way to rid hands of germs.
Remember that this is merely a temporary solution, and that you should still wash your hands as soon as you have the opportunity to do so.
Keeping a bottle of hand sanitiser in your bag helps you fight germs on the go
2. Cover noses and mouths when coughing or sneezing
To prevent a virus from spreading among people at home or in school, you should teach your children to cover their mouths and noses with a tissue or handkerchief whenever they cough or sneeze.
Also encourage each family member to wash hands after coughing or sneezing to make sure that any germs that might have landed there are removed.
Covering noses and mouths with a tissue or handkerchief prevents the spread of this airborne virus
3. Clean and disinfect your home regularly
Keeping the environment you live in clean and germ-free is also a crucial step in flu prevention. Just as choosing antibacterial hand and body soap is important, selecting germ-fighting cleaning products for your home makes the disinfecting process more effective.
4. Stay away from crowded areas whenever possible
During peak flu season, staying away from crowds can do a lot in terms of flu prevention for your family. While it is impossible to completely avoid schools or grocery stores, you can choose to limit your visits to places like public play areas and movie theatres.
The less your family comes into contact with people who have the flu, the smaller chance you have of catching the virus.
5. Keep family members who are feeling unwell at home
When any member of you family feels sick, you should make sure that they stay at home. This not only allows them to rest and recover, but also prevents them from further spreading the virus around.
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A strong and healthy body means a strong and healthy immune system
6. Take your daily dose of vitamins
Whether vitamins are in the form of supplements or foods that are rich in nutrients, make it a habit to encourage you family to get their recommended daily dose. Mums can do more by preparing healthier meals and having fruits like apples and oranges available to snack on at home.
7. Exercise regularly
Getting at least an hour of exercise on most days of the week benefits your entire family by keeping your bodies fit and healthy, releasing stress and boosting your immune system.
8. Make sure everyone gets enough sleep
Setting an early bedtime for your kids and yourselves can help ensure that each member of your family gets enough sleep. Sufficient rest allows your body to recover, and also naturally boosts the immune system.
Your school-age children should be getting at least 10 hours a day, while toddlers need at least 12 hours of sleep. For adults, 7-9 hours of sleep is recommended.
Extra precautions for flu prevention like flu shots are always a good idea
9. Schedule a seasonal flu shot
It is best to be prepared for each flu season by getting vaccinated approximately 2 weeks before it begins. A yearly flu shot is recommended because flu viruses are always evolving, and because immunity to the virus may fade over time.
You should also consider getting flu shots before your family travels to a new place to make sure that you are all protected against the virus.
10. Make frequent hand washing a habit
With frequent hand washing, you will be able to eliminate germs that may be picked up from things that were previously touched by a person with the flu.
In order to make the hand washing process more effective, choose an antibacterial soap like Lifebuoy handwash, which kills 99.9% of germs in just 10 seconds. With its superior germ protection, you can worry less that your family might fall ill.
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It’s no secret, hand washing is one of the most effective ways to prevent spreading and catching the flu virus
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