Beat the winter bugs!

Here are some simple steps to help your family stay well, and avoid spreading infection to others this winter.

To minimise the spread of coughs, colds and the winter sickness bug Norovirus, children should to wash their hands regularly with soap and warm water, especially after using the toilet and before eating. An alcohol-based hand gel is a good alternative when you’re out and about. Visit www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/best-way-to-wash-your-hands/ for more tips.

Remind children to use tissues to trap germs when they cough or sneeze and bin used tissues as quickly as possible. Germs can live on surfaces for 24 hours, sometimes longer, so keep antibacterial or disinfectant wipes to hand.

Take advantage of the opportunity for your child to have the nasal flu vaccination in school - it’s quick and painless! And if you’re pregnant, you can have the flu jab for free. Talk to your GP or pharmacist.

Make sure your diet includes a good balance of fruit and vegetables, find ways to stay active and ensure you get plenty of sleep.

If children do come down with a sickness bug, they should stay at home for 48 hours after the last episode of vomiting/ diarrhoea. Give them plenty of water to drink, and liquid paracetamol for fever aches and pains. They do not need to go to the GP or to Accident & Emergency. However, if symptoms last longer than a few days, contact your GP or call NHS111. 

Check out more germ-busting tips and the Flu Heroes animation on our Health for Kids website:
www.healthforkids.co.uk 

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