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Helping yourself – Stay Safer

Recommendations to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your face, and keep a safe distance of 6 feet have become all too common, and can serve us all well now and for years to come during cold and flu seasons. But there is more we can do.

In your concern about avoiding illness, remember that if you are a caregiver, you are also at increased risk. Caregivers are notably tired and worn down, and are just as susceptible to the cold, flu, and current COVID-19 pandemic. The consequences can be wide-reaching. If you have to remove yourself from the home for an extended period of time or call in unexpected respite care, these changes can be stressful for your loved one and can further open them up to the chance to fall ill. What else can we work into our daily routines that will help us all stay safer, especially seniors and the immunocompromised?

Other precautions you can take include:

Exercise. Physical activity can boost your immune system and can reduce the risk of a cold by 33%.

Sanitize mobile devices, keyboards, doorknobs, and light switches regularly.

Drink plenty of liquids. Water and hot tea can help the nasal passages stay moist and can trap germs before they enter the body. Note that seniors have 10 to 15 percent less water in their bodies than when they were younger, allowing dehydration to onset much more quickly.

Eat a varied diet that includes protein, which can help boost the immune response. Consider adding fish, eggs, or yogurt to your diet.

Get a flu shot. Flu vaccines change each year and it’s important to stay current on your vaccine regimen. Last year’s vaccine may not protect you this year. The CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October.


Did you know that chicken soup does actually help? The steam helps open nasal passages. The broth soothes the throat. The protein from the soup helps infection-fighting white blood cells do their job!

Source: Daily Caring

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