Preventing Flu: Essential Tips

Jun 2013

With the summer fast approaching, many of us will be looking forward to finally embarking on the holidays we booked back in the cold, harsh days of January. What seemed like a distant glimmer of sunshine back then is now really here – and no doubt you’ll be getting excited, making preparations, and digging out your beach wear from the bottom of the wardrobe.

But all too often, during that final push to get everything done before we depart, it can be easy to fall prey to illness – seemingly unlikely summer colds and flu in particular. All of a sudden, your dream vacation isn’t so dreamy any more, and you end up spending your time abroad coughing and sniffling through a blocked nose, or worse, cancelling your holiday altogether.

So, with your holiday on the horizon, it’s always best to stay healthy and take steps to avoid catching colds and flu. Here are some measures you can take to ensure that your summer vacation stays sunny, bright, and infection-free:

Maintain Good Hygiene Practices

Germs play an integral part in the spread of flu, so ensure that you observe clean hygiene practices to minimise the risk of infection. Wash your hands regularly, and keep surfaces in your home clean. If you use a communal keyboard or telephone at work, sanitise them regularly to kill bacteria. And if a colleague has come down with a cold, try to make sure they cover their mouth when they cough or sneeze (but politely of course!).

Don’t Get Run Down

We’re more susceptible to illness when we’re tired and fatigued, as our immune system can become weakened. So, in the weeks leading up to your holiday, don’t let your busy lifestyle get on top of you. Get plenty of rest, and make sure you’re getting the recommended seven-eight hours sleep every night. If you’re having a stressful time at work, ensure you’re using your spare time to wind down.

Medicinal Help

If you’re over 65, have a condition which makes you particularly susceptible to flu, such as diabetes or heart, lung or kidney disease, and have been in regular contact with someone suffering from suspected flu, antiviral medications such as Tamiflu may be able to help. If you are concerned, speak to your doctor for advice.