One in five of us will catch the flu in any given flu season. But, there are some strategies you can do to fight back before the flu takes you down.
Take time to get the flu shot
Experts say the single best way to avoid the flu is to get vaccinated as soon as the vaccine is available. The ideal time to get your flu shot is early fall. But, if you haven’t had your shot yet this flu season, make plans now.
Flu shots are typically covered once a year at no cost to you by your Wellmark health insurance benefits. Just be sure to log in to myWellmark® to check your benefits before getting the vaccine, and be sure to use an in-network provider.
Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze
People with the flu can spread it to others up to six feet away. Keep germs off of your hands by sneezing into a tissue or paper towel. If you don’t have one available, sneeze into the crook of your elbow. Do your best to avoid being around people who are coughing and sneezing.
Scrub your hands
A drizzle of water won’t do the trick. Scrub often with soap and warm water for 15 to 20 seconds. Gel sanitizers are a great option when water and soap aren’t available.
Keep your hands off your face
The average person touches his or her face 16 times per hour. Resist the urge to rub your eyes or touch your mouth, nose and face. These little habits can be exactly what the flu virus needs to get into your system.
Stay home when you're sick
Don't try to "tough it out" with a day at the office. If you have symptoms like a fever, cough, sore throat and body aches, you may have the flu. If that's the case, you should stay home and rest, and don't risk spreading it to others. If you have to leave your home, wear a face mask and cover your cough and sneezes with a tissue.