6 ways to avoid a winter cold

Germs: Coughing & sneezing are the most common ways for germs to spread
Germs: Coughing & sneezing are the most common ways for germs to spread

Hospitals are bursting at the seams due to the outbreak of the flu virus and with children returning to school next week the chances of them, and subsequently you, being exposed so some nasty bugs increase.

Cold expert J. Owen Hendley, MD, a professor of medicine at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville suggests on WebMD that there 'may be as many as 200 cold viruses."

Therefore, although it is difficult to avoid,  here are some simple tips that may help prevent you from catching something:

1) Cover Up

Coughing & sneezing are the most common ways for germs to spread so ensure those infected cover their mouth when coughing and sneezing and avoid those that don't!

2) Don’t touch

Rhinoviruses can be spread by touching, shaking hands and other personal contact. Avoid, when possible, any unnecessary contact.

3) Wash

Rhinoviruses can survive for 24 hours on door handles, counter tops, shopping trolleys, light switches and even pens, so always wash your hands before touching your face again. The virus is most likely to spread quickly after entering through your nose or your eyes.

4) Vaccination

One of the best ways to avoid the flu virus is to get vaccinated. It does not work all the time as the virus' may vary but is still a great way to prevent a bad dose.

5) Sleep

There is growing evidence that sleep supports the immune system and regular rest can help the body defend itself against any bugs.

6) Work Out

Regular exercise can also enhance the immune function helping you recover faster or possibly avoid more serious symptoms.

If you are unlucky enough to contract a cold, then stay at home if possible, drink lots of water and get plenty of rest. If your cold symptoms worsen contact your GP immediately.

Share this article