How to prevent getting sick

December 19, 2019

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. These are simply suggestions and are not full proof. 

As fall turns to winter the Christmas lights glow, the falling snowflakes sparkle, and the days grow shorter. The darker it gets earlier in the day, the more people keep shut inside. And while it creates a time for Hallmark movies and hot cocoa with the family it also allows for a quicker spread of germs. 

Colds and flus are most common during the winter months but as many Fruita Monument High School students know other fast traveling illnesses, like the norovirus, can find their way into unsuspecting victims.  

While it has become common for many people to fall ill at some point during the winter, most individuals do not want to have to call in sick from work or miss something important at school. Luckily, there are steps to stay healthy during the winter.

 

  • Wash your hands and don’t touch your face

 

You hear it from your parents, your teachers, and your doctors but it really is important. Washing your hands with antibacterial soap will prevent illnesses such as the cold and flu. Erica Skillicorn, Senior at Fruita Monument High School, says “I definitely agree that you need to wash your hands more during the winter months.” Viruses like the norovirus requires extra steps- like bleaching your hands if you come in contact with someone with the sneaky sickness. Your face is the prime place for bacteria and viruses to thrive since there are so many entrances. 

 

  • Get quality sleep!

 

That next episode on Netflix (or Disney+) is not actually worth it if you want to keep your body healthy and happy. It has been proven that teenagers need around 9 hours of sleep per night to keep their body in good condition. But many students find they don’t get that amount. Alyssa Biddle, Senior at Fruita Monument High School, says “I make sure to get my homework done early in the day so I can get to bed at a reasonable time. I tend to go to bed around nine or nine-thirty.” Luckily, District 51 changed start times this year to encourage students to get more sleep. Biddle says “I appreciate the extra sleep for sure!” 

 

  • Healthy foods: Fruits and Vegetables

 

Another thing most students hear from their parents, “eat your greens.” But many do not realize how much better fruits and veggies are for you than fast food and processed products. These natural products have vitamins, minerals, and plant chemicals. As well as fiber. These positives benefit your immune system, which will help fight off colds and flus. 

 

  • Be wary of sharing food and drinks

 

Often people don’t think twice about sharing a couple of sips from the same drink or taking a bite from each other’s food. Yet, it is such a quick transaction of germs which will ultimately lead to sickness if one of the participants is ill. 

 

  • Clean your phone

 

According to Time.com, the average American checks their phone 47 times. In the same article it said, “a recent study found more than 17,000 bacterial gene copies on the phones of high school students. Scientists at the University of Arizona have found that cell phones carry 10 times more bacteria than most toilet seats.” It’s a good idea to continually wash your hands when touching your phone throughout the day and also wipe it down with antibacterial wipes, or Lysol wipes if there’s a virus going around.

 

While these tips to staying healthy are not foolproof they are better than doing nothing. So while we head into this season of staying indoors in close proximity with others

 

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