COLDWATER (WTVB) - Kids are back in school and the Health Department in Coldwater says some are starting to experience the first cases of ‘the crud’ that comes from being in closed quarters, shuffling papers and sharing pencils. The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency says it has a three step plan to limit your exposure to the “virus of the day” circulating in your community. Number one is take time to get a flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control recommends that everyone 6 months of age or older get a shot and the local health agency says you should do it as soon as possible. Next, they say take everyday preventive actions to stop the spread of germs and reduce your exposure to viruses, like cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and be sure to throw the tissue in the trash after you have used it. And Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. And if you are sick with flu-like illness, limit your contact with others and stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone so as to avoid spreading the illness to others. And number three, take flu antiviral drugs if prescribed by your physician. Antivirals are different than antibiotics and should be taken early during the onset of the illness.
The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency will provide updates concerning flu outbreaks as they occur. In addition, the health department will be out in the community this fall giving the seasonal flu shot at a location near you. More information is always available at www.bhsj.org.