Flu season is upon us, whether we’re ready or not! The dreaded illness can keep you in bed for days or weeks and can sometimes have very severe health consequences. Luckily, there are a few simple things that you can do to reduce your risk of catching the flu. And even better? These methods won’t break the bank.
For starters, you should highly consider getting a flu shot. For most people, flu vaccines are covered by health insurance. This means the vaccine will most likely be free, with a possible copay fee. However, it is recommended that you check with your insurance company before going to get vaccinated. But even if it’s not covered by insurance, it will most likely be a small fee for the shot.
If you do get your flu shot, check out some of the bonuses the provider may offer. For example, places like Target, CVS, and Publix are offering coupons or gift cards to those who get vaccinated at their locations. So you don’t have to pay for the shot and you get a reward… What could be better?
One of the most cost-effective things you can do to avoid catching the flu is washing your hands regularly. A little soap and water cost barely anything, but it’s a great way to kill off any germs that may cause the flu. Luckily, washing your hands properly can be done in a few simple steps:
- Wet your hands with warm water
- Put soap on your hands and rub your hands together to form a lather
- Wash for 10-15 seconds at the bare minimum
- Rinse your hands well
- Use a towel to turn off the tap to avoid contaminating your clean hands
Along with ensuring you properly wash your hands on a regular basis, you should try to avoid touching your face with your hands. By touching your eyes, nose, or mouth you can easily contaminate yourself will germs.
And lastly, make sure you’re getting enough sleep and exercise. One of the easiest ways to avoid being one of the five to 20% of Americans who get the flu every year is to do your best to make sure your body is healthy enough to fight off any germs.
I know of many families that have been hit by the colds and stomach bugs in the Twin Cities area already, so it’s best to minimize contact and follow the tips above to keep your family healthy!