14 Dec Tips for Staying Healthy During the Winter Season
Winter weather can come with a slew of health risks and medical complications, ranging from heart problems, pneumonia, flu, and injuries from slips and falls. Last winter’s flu season was one of the most severe in years, leading to almost 80,000 deaths according to the CDC. Taking extra precautions to protect yourself from illnesses is the best way to ensure that you can enjoy all the things you look forward to during this season and beyond. Here are a few simple reminders.
- Don’t delay treatment- see your provider when you feel ill.
Make an appointment before your symptoms worsen.
- Family Practice Associates of Lexington (FPA)has evening hours at both locations with appointments available until 7pm Monday-Friday. Make sure to call between 8am – 4:30pm to schedule an evening appointment.
- Saturday hours are also available at the Hamburg office from 9am- 12pm. You can call between 8:30am – 10:30am on Saturdays to schedule an appointment.
- FPA now offers online eVisits for some illnesses which can be completed at home without a trip to the office, retail clinic, or ER. Use your Follow My Health Patient Portal to request an e-visit ,or go to www.FPAlex.followmyhealth.com to create a patient portal account.
- If FPA is not open, remember the lower cost alternatives such as walk-in clinics and urgent care centers. Avoid costly ER visits by using these treatment options. Our goal at Family Practice Associates of Lexington is to catch illnesses before they worsen, and keep you home and out of the hospital.
- Wash your hands frequently.
Regularly wash your hands with soap and warm water. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, germs can get on your hands from a variety of sources. Bacteria and viruses that can cause pneumonia and flu are often passed through contact. Washing them often will rid your hands of the germs and help you protect yourself from illnesses such as respiratory infections and viruses.
- Sanitize your surroundings.
In addition to washing your hands, if you know people around you are under the weather, wiping down surfaces will help kill the germs.
- Stay active.
Staying active will help promote bone and muscle health, control weight, and improve sleep patterns. This leads to an overall healthier lifestyle throughout all the seasons. And the stronger you are in general, the stronger your body will be to fight off illnesses – or recover in case you get sick.
- Get a flu shot.
Flu can increase your chances of developing pneumonia, which is just one of the many reasons to be immunized against the flu. The flu shot is recommended for everyone older than six months. The flu vaccine is especially critical for seniors, pregnant women, those who have chronic health problems or compromised immune systems, and caregivers and family of those groups.
- Consider a pneumococcal vaccine.
One of the most common and fatal types of pneumonia is pneumococcal. Although the vaccine doesn’t cover every possible cause for pneumonia, the current vaccination is effective against the most common strains. All adults 65 years of age and older should receive a pneumonia shot. In addition, anyone with long-term health problems or compromised immune systems that are ages 2through 64 years of age should be vaccinated for pneumonia.
- Eat Healthy.
A healthy diet strengthens the immune system, helping the body resist viruses or infection. Your body needs antioxidants and vitamins to stay healthy. According to DailyBurn.com, some of the foods and spices that provide your body with what it needs to fight off illnesses are garlic, sweet potatoes, turmeric, dark leafy greens, and, as you may have guessed, chicken soup.
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