Exploring the Best Strategies for Flu Prevention
Influenza, or the flu, is an upper respiratory tract infection. This highly contagious viral infection is spread from person to person when an infected person sneezes, coughs, or speaks. These actions release flu particles, which can then be inhaled by others. The flu is a much more serious condition than the common cold and it may lead to complications that require emergency care at your local hospital . Consider taking the following preventive actions to reduce your risk of contracting this infection.
Talk to Your Doctor about the Influenza Vaccine
Almost everyone is a good candidate for the annual flu shot. Healthcare experts recommend the flu shot for individuals six months of age and older, and it is considered particularly important for children, the elderly, and healthcare workers to be vaccinated. Getting the flu shot each year is the most effective way to prevent infection with this virus.
Reduce Exposure to Germs
In addition to getting your annual flu shot , you can reduce your risk of getting sick by avoiding contact with sick people. If you become ill, try to stay home to avoid infecting others.
Practice Good Hygiene
Healthcare providers recommend washing your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water. It’s ideal to wash your hands after sneezing or coughing, before eating, before preparing meals, and after using the restroom. Additionally, sneeze or cough into a tissue or the crook of your elbow, and avoid touching your mouth, nose, or eyes.
Disinfect Frequently Touched Surfaces
Another way you can reduce the spread of germs is by frequently disinfecting objects and surfaces that are touched often. These include phones, doorknobs, and keyboards.
West Hills Hospital offers a comprehensive suite of preventive healthcare services, including influenza vaccinations. Our community hospital is also proud to provide West Hills-area families with exceptional care in our burn center, maternity department, emergency care department, and cancer care center. If you would like to speak with a registered nurse about flu prevention, call our Consult-A-Nurse line at (818) 676-4000.