The Thanksgiving holiday ushered in the busiest time of travel of the year. Persons who plan to travel either by train, plane, or bus, should consider the extra measures of precaution they should take before purchasing their tickets. Sitting side by side and standing elbow to elbow in lines, may not be the healthiest thing we can do to avoid the H1N1 influenza strain, or other “bugs” for that matter.
Just as things are beginning to slow down in regard to the H1N1 flu, such as school closings, there will be more and more people going from place to place to visit family during this special season. It gives germs the opportunities to jump from place to place, as well, therefore exposing everyone. The federal government is posting notices in airports, seaports and border crossings to remind travelers to “Stop, Wash & Go”.
Dr. Beth Bell, of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reminds persons to be aware of the things they can do to stay healthy. For those who must travel and be exposed to coughs and sneezes, the best suggestion is to take both the seasonal and H1N1 flu shots, wash hands often, cover coughs and sneezes.
If you aren’t feeling quite up to par, don’t go out and be exposed to possible flu or other bugs; and also, don’t expose others. Shopping malls will be full of hundreds of persons. Many people are able to do their shopping online, which helps them avoid exposure to winter illnesses. If you do go out, you might consider wearing a respirator, as it filters out particles floating in the air.
Dr. Bell says the CDC has no idea what the trajectory of the influenza will be; a variety of different things could happen, including a third wave of it, or a mutation that could make the virus more deadly or less susceptible to medicines. You have lots of time to be prepared before you board that plane, train, or bus. Stock up on hand sanitizer, tissues, and other items you will need to keep your hands clean and your face covered if you cough or sneeze.
We hope you will have a healthy holiday season!