With all of the news headlines about the surge of viral illnesses like COVID-19, the flu and RSV this year, it can feel overwhelming trying to stay healthy. Since viral infections tend to spread really easily during the winter season, taking extra precautions is important to ward off illness.
Even if you take all the precautions and extra steps to avoid getting sick, you may still fall victim to a viral infection this year. Read on as the AFC Urgent Care Cleveland team shares information about viral infections below.
What Kind of Infections Are Common in Winter?
While infections can come from a variety of sources, viral infections are the most common cause of illness during the winter months. Since we spend so much more of our time in our homes, schools and other buildings rather than outside, the spread of infection is much higher. If you are exposed to the common cold or the flu, your body has to work hard to avoid illness.
If your immune system is not able to successfully fight off the infection, symptoms like a fever, cough and sore throat are all expected to begin within one to four days of the exposure. If you do start feeling ill while you are out and about, head for home to avoid spreading it to someone else.
Common Ways Infections Spread
- Uncovered coughs
- Contact with contaminated surfaces like doorknobs or countertops
- Long-term contact with infected people
What Can I Do to Avoid Getting Sick?
While it is not completely possible to avoid illness every year, there are some things you can do to lower your risk. Getting your flu shot is the best way to prevent influenza! In addition, getting enough sleep each night and staying hydrated helps your body function at its best. Keep exercising and eating well and you will give your body the best chance at warding off viral illnesses this year.
It is also important to avoid people who are infected or who are showing visible signs of illness. While you may do your best to stay home when you are sick, others may not be and could make you sick just by being near you!
- Drink plenty of water.
- Rest often and get quality sleep.
- Avoid caffeine, alcohol and sugary food while you are sick.
- Eat easy-to-digest foods.
Are you feeling ill? Come see us at AFC Urgent Care Cleveland for a diagnosis and treatment plan today.