Thousands of elderly adults require a visit to the hospital each year because of complications from influenza.
Not only can the flu wreak havoc upon an aging adult’s body, but it can also even lead to death. Seniors that depend on family caregivers and home care providers are even more at risk because they often cannot enact the preventative steps needed to lower their exposure to the flu virus.
Anyone that desires to reduce the risk of their aging loved one getting the flu should implement these 10 prevention tips at once.
1. Wash Hands Properly: Most people agree that washing their hands is important, but do they do so properly? To kill influenza and other germs, everyone must use warm water and soap, then scrub for around 20 seconds, then rinse thoroughly.
2. Use Hand Sanitizer: While it’s not as good as soap and water, hand sanitizer is quite effective at killing germs. Hand sanitizer is ideal for places that don’t offer convenient bathrooms, so home care providers can carry it with them when they go out with elderly adults.
3. Boost the Immune System: Seniors have a weakened immune system, so good nutrition, exercise, plenty of water and restful sleep can all help the body get stronger to fight off the influenza virus.
4. Cover Up Coughs and Sneezes: One way the influenza virus is spread is through the air via coughs and sneezes. Everyone needs to cover up when they do so and wash their hands right after. Coughing or sneezing into the elbow or tissue is even safer.
5 Sanitize Surfaces: Another way the influenza virus spreads is by touching infected surfaces. Use a mild bleach solution to clean counters, light switches, doorknobs, mobile devices, remote controls, and other common areas.
6. Don’t Touch the Face: Viruses enter the body via the nose, eyes, and mouth so seniors should avoid touching these areas without clean hands. Family caregivers and home care providers can also remind elderly adults about this habit, especially when out in public.
7: Keep Away from Ill People: Reducing exposure to already ill people can help seniors stay healthy during flu season. If friends or family members are sick, even their adorable grandchildren, seniors should postpone visits until they are over it.
8: Avoid Travel: Spending time together with a group of people in a small, enclosed area like a bus, van, or airplane can spread influenza quickly. Seniors should avoid travel unless necessary to steer clear of highly contagious environments.
9. Drink Lots of Liquids: Not only do liquids flush out toxins in the body, but they also help hydrate nasal passages and tissues that act as a barrier between germs and the body.
10. Get a Flu Vaccine
The most important thing to prevent seniors from getting influenza each year is a flu vaccine. Not only will this reduce the risk of seniors contracting the flu, but it also reduces the seriousness if they do. Family caregivers, family members, and home care providers should also get a timely flu shot so they won’t infect the elderly adult.
If you or an aging loved one is considering hiring Home Care Services in Amberley, OH, please contact the caring staff at Queen City Elder Care today. Serving Cincinnati and Surrounding Communities. Call Us Today (513) 510-4410.
Michele Vollmer is a visionary leader who is perpetually searching for ways to improve, so to remain at the leading edge of the home care industry.She has served in the healthcare industry since 1989, including pharmaceutical and home health sales, as well as hospice sales and sales management.
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