Cooler temperatures bring a variety of illnesses to the workplace. Whether it’s a common cold or a bad case of the flu, ailments can put a halt to productivity. There are a few things you can keep in mind during this season to stay healthy and help prevent the spread of sickness.
According to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), everyone 6 months of age and older should get a flu vaccine every season. It takes approximately two weeks after the shot for the body to develop antibodies to protect against the illness. Flu season can start as early as September and lasts as late as May.
Be Mindful of Germ Hotspots
Reduce your risk of exposure and the spread of bacteria by being aware of common germ hotspots. Germs that spread from one person to the next include E. coli, staphylococcus and the norovirus. If possible, sanitize these areas frequently:
- Personal and public desks
- Break room fridge
- Keyboard and mouse
- Mugs and cups
- Door handles
Wash Your Hands Frequently
Wash your hands often throughout the day. Always use antibacterial soap, and wring your hands for 15 to 20 seconds before rinsing them clean. For times when you can’t run to the sink to wash your hands, sanitize with an alcohol-gel hand sanitizer, especially when you expose yourself to germ-heavy hotspots or shake hands with others.
Stay Home When Sick
Avoid spreading sickness to other employees by staying home when you have a fever or are truly sick. This helps prevent an employee outbreak and it can also help you recuperate much faster. When you’re at work, try to avoid close contact with anyone who shows signs of illness.
Use antibacterial wipes to clean frequently touched surface in your work area to help keep germs at bay. It’s also a good idea to keep an adequate supply of tissues on to deal with coughs and sneezes.
Put an end to the domino effect of illness at work by reducing germs and bacteria and by following a few simple guidelines to stay safe. Staples carries a wide variety of tissues, hand sanitizers and cleaning supplies to help get you through the cold and flu season.