Year after year as the cooler weather sets in, our overall health tends to be put on the back burner.
With the combination of seasonal weather changes, the demands of a new school year, fall sports kicking off, and of course the stress that the upcoming holidays can bring; it is no wonder our health is put to the test.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu and cold season can begin as early as October.On average, adults can catch two to three colds each fall, and children tend to sneeze and sniffle all season long.
With this in mind, use these helpful tips to keep you and your loved ones outside enjoying the beauty of fall, instead of being cooped up in your doctor’s office or hospital waiting rooms for hours on end.
Take steps to prevent the flu:
- Get your flu vaccine
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people
- Wash your hands often
- Take flu antiviral drugs if your doctor prescribes them
- Children younger than 6 months are at high risk of serious flu illness, but are too young to be vaccinated. Instead, people who care for infants should be vaccinated.
Keep food safe:
- Clean hands and surfaces often
- Separate foods to avoid cross-contamination
- Cook poultry and other meats to proper temperatures
- Chill necessary foods promptly
Wash your hands properly:
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with antibacterial soap after wetting them with warm water
- Be sure to later the backs of your hands as well
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds
- Rinse well under clean water
Avoid injury during fall chores:
- Stand upright when raking leaves and pull from your arms and legs
- Don’t overfill leaf bags
- When picking up leaf bags, bend at the knee and use your legs, not your back, for support
- Don’t allow children to play in leaf piles near the curb. The piles can blur the view of drivers and put your child at risk for getting hit-especially since it gets dark earlier
Use fireplace safely:
- Use a fireplace screen to keep sparks from flying out of the fireplace
- Never leave a burning fire unattended
- Make sure a fire in the fireplace is completely out before going to bed or leaving the house
Use caution with space heaters:
- If your space heater requires venting, make sure you have vented it to the outdoors
- Never use your stove or oven to heat your home
- Always allow a few feet of empty area around space heaters
- Don’t let young children within 3 feet of a space heater
- Never let space heaters run when being away from the house