4 May 2018
Keeping Well in Cold and Flu Season – By Interchange Australia Consultant, Amber Hall
The Influenza (more commonly known as the Flu) and Cold season has arrived! Both are highly contagious infections, however the Flu is more serious than a common cold and can be potentially fatal particularly for people over 65 and those with chronic illness. The Flu is spread by contact with fluids from coughs and sneezes and it is estimated that Flu contributes to over 3,000 deaths in Australia each year *.
Each year, Interchange Australia offers staff and volunteers a free Flu shot, protecting both our workers and our clients. Whilst the vaccine is not 100% effective it can provide a high level of protection and reduce symptoms.
Some useful tips to keep you well;
• Washing hands – regularly using the correct washing hands technique to avoid the spread of germs. A useful guide on hand washing from the World Health Organisation.
• Good coughing etiquette – using a tissue and disposing immediately or coughing into your elbow/sleeve.
• Rest – keeping warm, staying at home and avoiding public places so your body can fight the illness.
• Keep hydrated – drinking plenty of fluids, ideally water.
• Eating well – eating plenty of healthy fruit and vegetables high in Vitamin C. Our cooking groups recently made a Citrus dessert with oranges and lemons to boost their immunity!
Interchange Australia endeavours to stop the spread of the cold and flu by;
• Avoiding the spread of germs – we ask that our staff and clients refrain from working or attending activities including our day program until such illness has passed as some people have a lowered immunity and are susceptible to colds/flu/infections.
• Practising good hygiene practices– all of our offices and campuses practice good hand hygiene and are equipped with personal protective equipment, for example gloves, hand sanitizers etc.
• Healthy Living – we provide a range of activities to ensure our clients remain healthy over the winter months by maintaining physical exercise, relaxation practices and keeping hydrated.
* Better Health, www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au