It’s no secret that folks in NYC and all over the world are a bit worried about getting sick these days. While there’s no guaranteed way to stay safe during flu season, or during the outbreak of something a bit more worrisome, there are some steps that we can all take to make sure we stay safe.
Since you can never be too careful, Stonehenge NYC is here with some simple, easy advice on how to stay safe and healthy!
Wash Your Hands:
You’ve heard it a million times before but advice this good bears repeating. The best way to stay safe is to wash your hands. This keeps you and the people around you safe. In fact, before doctors regularly washed their hands, mortality rates in patients were much higher.
We all know how to wash our hands, right? Not necessarily. The easiest way these days is to simply use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60% or higher alcohol content. That said, it’s much better to vigorously wash your hands with warm soapy water. Be sure to lather your hands for at least 20 seconds. Sure, it’s boring, but it’s worth it!
The CDC recommends we all stay about 3 feet away from each other at all times. Of course, that’s tough when you’re on the subway but probably attainable the rest of the time. If you are jammed on the train, try to keep away from people who are coughing, sneezing, and generally behaving like a sick person. Avoid touching the subway poles and other hard surfaces too. If you’re young and spry, it’s time to practice your subway balancing skills. Or, just wear gloves!
Don’t Touch Your Face:
We live in one of the biggest and most populous cities on earth. That means it’s a little harder to avoid human contact here than if we lived in Buford, Wyoming. How do icky diseases get from your hands into your body? Oftentimes, it’s when you touch your face. Those germs and viruses are able to creep into your eyes, nose, and mouth. YUCK.
Don’t think you touch your face all that often? Here’s a fun game: Start taking a daily tally of how many times you touch your face in a day. Most of us unknowingly scratch our nose, rub our face, and generally manhandle our moneymakers far more than we’re aware. Once you’ve got your daily total, make a game out of getting that number as low as possible!
If you are feeling a bit under the weather, you can take steps to ensure you don’t infect others. If you are sneezing or coughing, be sure to only do it into the crook of your elbow. If you’re using tissues, be sure to discard them as soon as you’re done and wash your hands right away. Most importantly...
See a Doctor:
Not feeling well? Got a cough? Maybe the sniffles? New Yorkers like to tough it out, even when they’re sick and that’s not always a good thing. If you’re worried that you might have caught something, the best thing you can do is to go see a doctor.
Your healthcare provider is a great source of information. They’ll be able to check you and see if what you’re feeling is something normal, or something that requires a bit more attention. The earlier you’re able to identify a serious problem, the more likely you are to avoid long term consequences and infecting others.
Don’t Panic...but Be Prepared:
There’s a good chance that we’ll all have forgotten about this in a few months, but it’s important to remain prepared. Don’t forget that we live in a city and that much of our food, medicines, and other everyday goods are delivered from out of town.
When things do start to look scary many people will panic and run to the stores to buy up any and everything they think they might need. When that happens, it’s important to be prepared ahead of time. Remember that in a big city like NYC there will always be small and large emergencies. Be sure to always keep a small stash of food, water, and basic medicine around your home. You never know when you might need them.
Most importantly, don't panic. Keeping a cool head when things seem grim will set you ahead of most. We've weathered storms before, and we'll pass through this one soon enough.