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From Our Partner

Protecting Your Family from the Flu

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Don't get sick now or over the holidays, and certainly not in January when you have so many resolutions and new demands to attend to! Flu prevention is key.

 Here are the top 7 ways to help you and your family avoid getting the flu: 

1. Get the flu shot 

The most effective way to protect yourself and your family from the flu. 

The flu season can begin as early as October and continue to occur as late as May, but get your flu shot early so you are protected before influenza begin spreading in your community

It helps your body to build the defenses it needs to fight the flu, and helps protects the people around you, including babies younger than 6 months who are too young to get the vaccine and at high risk of developing serious complications from the flu. 

Research shows that every year Ontario’s flu shot program prevents more than 30,000 visits to hospital emergency department and more than 200,000 visits to doctor’s offices 

2. Wash your hands with soap and water often, for at least 15 seconds 

Even if you get the flu shot, cleaning your hands properly is an important way to guard against and limit the spread of many illnesses 

Viruses can live on your hands for up to 3 hours 

3. Keep an alcohol-based hand sanitizer (gel or wipes) handy at work, home and in your car 

Must be at least 60 per cent alcohol to be effective 

Can be as good as soap and water to clean your hands, unless they are visibly dirty or greasy 

4. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and throw the tissue out 

Cough into your upper sleeve if you don't have a tissue 

5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth 

The flu virus usually enters your body through the eyes, nose or mouth 

Try not to hold your face in your hands or rub your eyes 

6. Avoid large crowds of people where viruses can spread easily 

Stay home when you are sick 

7. Keep common surfaces and items clean and disinfected 

Viruses can live on hard surfaces – like countertops, door handles, computer keyboards and phones – for up to two days.

For more information on preventing the flu, take a look at these videos.

Photo Copyright: / 123RF Stock Photo

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