The flu is impacting parts of the United States earlier than normal this season. Health officials are stressing the importance of vaccinations. It is recommended that most people six months of age or older be vaccinated.
The Chief Medical Officer and Director of Public Health for the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services offers 12 tips for a healthy holiday season.
Dr. Joann Schaefer says that if you follow these tips, it will help you and your true love stay safe and healthy this holiday season.
1. “Get your flu vaccine. It’s National Influenza Vaccination Week (Dec. 2-8). Vaccination is your best protection against the flu. Remember, all vaccinations help prevent disease and save lives. Make sure you’re up-to-date.”
2. “Wash your hands a lot. Frequent handwashing helps prevent the spread of germs.”
3. “Stay warm. Exposure to cold temperatures can cause serious or life-threatening health problems, especially for babies and older adults.”
4. “Manage stress. The holidays don’t need to take a toll on your health. Keep an eye out for overspending, overindulgence and overcommitment.”
5. “Don’t drink and drive. If you choose to drink while attending parties, designate a driver who will get you home to your family safely.”
6. “Buckle up. Wear a seat belt every time you drive or ride in a car and always put your child in a safety seat.”
7. “Be smoke-free. Live a healthier life and lower your risk for disease by not smoking and avoiding secondhand smoke.”
8. “Get a check up. Exams and screenings help find problems early when they may be easier to treat.”
9. “Watch the kids. Keep an eye on the kiddos when they’re eating and playing. Children are at high risk for injuries that can lead to tragedies.”
10. “Prevent injuries. Injuries from falls and fires often happen around the holidays. Practice fire safety and use ladders safely.”
11. “Handle and prepare food safely. Wash hands often, keep raw meat separate, cook foods to the proper temperature and put those leftovers in the fridge right away.”
12. “Eat healthy. What to my wondering eyes should appear? If it’s a table full of mouthwatering treats, try to limit your portion sizes and substitute fresh fruit for some of those sweets.”