Take steps to avoid getting sick this winter

Hand washing

No one wants to get sick this winter. To help local residents keep well as the cold weather sets in, the three CCGs across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland have some helpful advice to help you avoid catching and spreading common winter illnesses.

Cold and flu are easily spread through coughs and sneezes which release germs which can live on hands and other surfaces for 24 hours. The best way to avoid getting sick is to make sure you wash your hands properly and frequently, and make sure that objects and surfaces that have come in contact with germs are sanitised.

Zoe Green, Head of infection prevention and control – Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland CCG’s said: “Washing your hands properly makes such a difference in stopping the spread of germs. Always make sure you use warm water and soap and that you wash the palms and backs of your hands, as well as between your fingers.

“To make sure you spend enough time washing your hands try singing ‘happy birthday’ twice through - this should take about 40 seconds.”

Join our Infection Detectives on their journey to find the correct hand washing technique.

Here are some other things you can do to stop spreading germs:

  •  sneeze or cough into tissues or your elbow to avoid passing on germs
  • throw away any used tissues immediately
  • make sure the cups and dishes you use when ill are cleaned properly using soap and hot water.

It is also recommended to get the flu jab to further prevent catching the flu. The vaccination is free to everyone over 65, carers, anyone with a long-term health condition and pregnant women. By getting vaccinated, you will drastically reduce your chances of catching the flu and prevent spreading it on to vulnerable members of the community.