How to Survive Peak Flu Season in Michigan

Warning-Flu-Sign-with-SunsetJanuary and February are typically months when flu season reaches its peak. Children, the elderly and people with chronic health conditions are considered to be at the highest risk for developing it. If you are an older adult or the caregiver for one, there are steps you can take to avoid the virus.

5 Ways to Stay Healthy During Flu Season

A few of the best ways to stay healthy when everyone around you is suffering through the flu include:

  1. Get your flu shot: If you haven’t done so already, schedule an appointment to get the flu shot. It is the very best way to keep the flu at bay.

  2. Limit shaking hands during flu season: While it might seem to be a little unfriendly, try to avoid shaking hands during flu season.  Because the influenza virus is so contagious, it can be transmitted from person-to-person very easily. A friend may not even realize yet that they are sick and unwittingly transfer their germs to you.

  3. Wash your hands often: Frequent hand washing with hot, soapy water is the best way to kill any viruses you may have been exposed to. Keep hand sanitizer in your pocket or purse for times you don’t have access to soap and water.

  4. Avoid touching your mouth and nose: Many of us don’t realize how many times a day we unknowingly touch our face. If you have picked up the flu virus on your hands, touching your nose or mouth may transfer the bug.

  5. Practice healthy habits: Make an extra effort during flu season to eat right, exercise and get an adequate amount of sleep. Keeping your immune system strong will help you fight off potential bugs.

If your prevention efforts fail and you develop the flu, call your doctor at the first sign you are sick. Prescription antiviral medications can shorten the amount of time you are sick and may also help prevent the virus from becoming too severe.

To learn more about influenza prevention, visit flu.gov. The site was developed by the Department of Health and Human Services to answer consumers’ questions on a variety of flu-related topics.