Unless you were a germophobe before the pandemic, you probably didn't think of your way of life as unhygienic. Soap and cleaners flew off the shelves, and we started asking ourselves, hmmm... why wasn't soap as popular before?
While much has changed since the beginning of the outbreak, experts have still continuously touted many healthy habits that we all should have been doing long before. But the more we know, the better we become. I hope this cold and flu season is the healthiest we've seen in a while, with everyone's newfound propensity for hand washing and immune boosting!
Here are five long-lasting healthy habits we should carry on even after the pandemic has cleared up.
1. Wash your hands often
And don't just rinse them with water or quickly wash with soap -- wash them thoroughly. The experts say at least 20 seconds of vigorous scrubbing with soap is required to remove any lingering germs. Even if you always wash up before eating or a trip to the bathroom, you should be cognizant of washing throughout the day, especially when you come back into your home.
2. Stay put if you're sick
We're all probably quite guilty of still living life as usual when we're mildly ill, which leads to community spread quite easily. Perhaps we'll take this quarantined mindset into the future when we become sick. Stay put, rest, and get well before you go back into the world. Of course, this isn't always possible, but decreasing the spread of illness as much as we can will help one trip out in public at a time.
3. Use that face mask if you're sick
I've often seen masked people in the pharmacy section of the department store during the cold and flu season. When diagnosed with the flu, it can be a good idea to use a mask when shopping for immune boosters and any necessary medications. And people did this many, many years before the COVID-19 pandemic. I see this becoming more popular throughout the flu season each year, which would help reduce spread if you have to leave the house for some essential items.
4. Don't spray coughs and sneezes everywhere
Even if you're home alone, get in the habit of coughing and sneezing into the crook of your elbow. As kids, many of us were taught to cover our coughs and sneezes, but that was often with our hands. The elbow is a better place, for if you're in a situation where you can't get to a sink or hand sanitizer, you'll have germs all over your hands and spread them everywhere.
5. Keep your hands away from your nose, eyes, or mouth
And because we're always touching something, basically try not to touch your face unless your hands have been freshly cleaned the right way. If you have germs on your hands, you'll wind up getting them in your eyes, nose, or mouth if you don't form the habit of not touching your face.
What new habits have you adopted during this pandemic that you think will help keep the germs at bay in the future when we get through this?
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