Cold and flu season can be a dangerous time for our older clients and aging loved ones, and this year’s in particular appears to be especially concerning. Health professionals are calling it an epidemic, and at least 47 states have reported widespread flu outbreaks, with Arizona counting more than 1,000 cases alone. With the increased threat for everyone of catching the cold or the flu, along with the added risks that affect our aging population, here are a few reminders for keeping yourself and those you care for safe during these winter months and in the future.
- Get vaccinated. The CDC recommends that people at high risk, including those over the age of 65, should get a flu shot each year. It is also especially important for caregivers and family members to be vaccinated in order to reduce the risk for their aging client or loved one. While the vaccination won’t protect against all strains of the flu virus, it does help in preventing at least some of the dangerous consequences.
- Wash your hands regularly. This may seem like common sense, but it becomes even more important during cold and flu season. It is especially important after every time you sneeze, cough or touch your face. Stopping the spread of disease starts with this simple task, and can end up saving lives.
- Sanitize your surroundings. Keeping things clean and getting rid of germs and bacteria will help prevent the spread of disease.
- Distance yourself from your client or loved one if you have come down with the cold or flu. Transmission can occur as close as six feet away, so be sure to give yourself as much room as you can. Wear a mask if need be.
Most importantly, rest. This can be one of the most difficult tasks as a caregiver, but it will result in the increased safety of your client or loved one. As a caregiver with Cypress, we can assist you in ensuring your client or loved one is safe by rescheduling and coordinating additional care. Please call us at 602-264-8009 and we are more than happy to help.