As we can see from the snow and cold air, winter is no longer coming, it’s HERE. You may have felt these temporal changes…but also you might have noticed an impact on your health. We haven’t found an exact reason why we get sick when the seasons change, but here’s a look into what may be happening to our bodies when they do.
As the seasons change, we become more susceptible to viruses that are spread by bacteria that flourish more in cold temperatures. Viruses like influenza that cause the flu, and rhinoviruses that cause the common cold, are the two found most during this season.
The little hairs in our nose that seem to just be annoying at times are actually really important in helping us fight off the incoming germs we breathe in. Studies show that in cold weather, our nose hairs don’t work as efficiently, which results in more inhalation of germs. You may be thinking, “Well if my nose hairs aren’t working right what CAN I do to prevent getting sick?” That answer is simple.
There are many things you can do to help protect yourself from a cold and the flu this season. Here are just a few:
Practice good hand washing techniques. You may think you’re washing your hands enough, but they may not be washed properly. If you want to learn more about hand washing techniques and why it’s important, check out this article on handwashing.
Eat well, sleep well, and be well. Eating more nutritious foods and getting a good amount of sleep can strengthen your immune system for when your body comes in contact with viruses and germs. Simply eating things that provide your body nutrients and getting at least 7 hours a sleep can go a long way in your overall health. Doesn’t sound too bad, right?
Get your flu shot! Getting your flu shot brings down your chances of catching the flu. Student Health Services, located on the ground floor of Commonwealth, offers free flu shots to students! All you need to do is make an appointment at the health center to get yours today! Some individuals are not able to get the flu shot, but if you are you should look into it, especially since the more of us who get the flu shot, the more we can protect those who can’t.
With the holiday season approaching, and all the family functions in full swing, you don’t want to risk spreading or catching any germs. Stay safe and healthy as this season commences golden rams!
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