Yup, that’s right. It’s that time of the year again. Everyone around you is coughing, sneezing and spreading their sickness.
The common cold is the most spread illness among humans, according to health experts. It is almost impossible to completely avoid getting a cold but there are a few ways to reduce the chances of battling the nasty virus.
After speaking with Monica Lattrell, LPN, a nurse at SUNY Plattsburgh’s Student Health and Counseling Center, where they have multiple students coming in with symptoms, I have learned a few tips and tricks to (almost) prevent the common cold.
- Wash your hands
Washing your hands is a great way to prevent the spread of germs that we don’t even know we have. After touching and being exposed to areas like the gym, mall, local library or any public place, washing your hands as frequent as possible is the best way to kill the viruses that are acquired from touching surfaces used by others. Another great way to make sure your hands are as clean as possible is to have a portable bottle of sanitizer with you at all times. Sanitizers can kill up to 99.9 percent of germs and can be used at any time in any place.
2. Keep a healthy lifestyle
Maintaining a healthy diet and actively exercising can be a great way to prevent getting sick. Exercising can keep your immune system healthy. Keeping your immune system in good health is a good way to make sure it is ready to fight infections. Getting a good night’s rest is key. When you are tired your body isn’t fighting as hard as it could be. Most health experts suggest eight to 10 hours of sleep each night.
3. Avoid touching your face
Touching surfaces in public places and then touching your face is the perfect way to spread germs. Touching your face is also the quickest way for germs to enter your body and make you sick. Viruses can enter the body through your nose, mouth and eyes.
4. Drink drink drink
Hydration is key to staying healthy. Lack of water while sick can lead to dehydration, which can cause nausea and vomiting. According to the SUNY Plattsburgh’s nurses, signs that show dehydration can be little to no urine or urine that is darker than usual.
5. Control stress
Not only can stress lead to chronic illness but it can also cause small infections. Studies have shown that increased stress levels can weaken the immune system. Therefore, it is harder to fight off potential infections. People who experience stress are more likely to catch a cold than people who are calmer. So keeping stress at ease is the better bet for staying healthy.
Cold and flu season is here. While these tricks will not ensure you don’t get the cold, they are good to keep in mind during the common cold season. If you start experiencing symptoms, consult your physician.