Avoiding Common Colds and Flu

The Centers for Disease Control recommends that the single best way to prevent the flu is to get vaccinated each fall.

Beyond getting a vaccination, keep in mind and put to practice the following tips from the Centers for Disease Control:

  • Avoid close contact.
    Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
    If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.
  • Cover your mouth and nose.
    Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.
  • Clean your hands.
    Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
    Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.

Health clubs and fitness centers can be sources of contamination of viruses from the cold and/or flu. Many people are known to exercise even while they are sick. Be extra careful to avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth after making contact with handles, seats or other parts of exercise machines. Also avoid placing your face directly on any part of an exercise machine. If you use a towel, be careful not to rub your eyes, nose or mouth with the towel if it has contacted potentially contaminated areas of exercise devices. If you are not sure a towel is your towel, get a new towel. Always wash your hands when you are finished exercising, especially before you eat. In the winter, when the indoor air is especially dry, use a lotion from your own personal kit to prevent your hands from becoming chaffed.

Avoiding Stress and Cold Temperature
A 2005 study at  the Common Cold Centre, Cardiff School of Biosciences, Cardiff University discovered that acute chilling of the feet causes the onset of common cold symptoms in around 10% of subjects who are chilled.

See also Infectious Disease in the Reference/Safety Folder of Exercise-Reports.com

CDC Preventing the Flu

Acute cooling of the feet and the onset of common cold symptoms. Fam. Pract. 2005 Nov 14; [Epub ahead of print]

Common Cold Centre, Cardiff School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff CF10 3US, UK.

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