Fall has arrived and with it come lower temperatures and the beginning of cold and flu season. It’s both the most beautiful time of year and the worst as kids head back to school and bring home all sorts of germs that inevitably spread throughout the home. Before too long, not only are your kids suffering with head colds, stomach bugs, and the dreaded flu, but you’re infected as well. For most people, especially working adults who have to support a family, sick days aren’t an option.
Sure, you can keep a child home from school, quarantine them to their room or a central location, and clean every square inch of your home, but sometimes you’re still going to get sick. There is no true preventative for the common cold or the stomach bug and if you’re stuck with either one, your body is rampant with germs. However, you still have to go to work. So how do you keep from spreading your germs all over your office?
Keep It To Yourself
- Call Out – If you’re sick with the stomach bug or another highly contagious virus, don’t go into work. Nine times out of ten, your boss and co-workers will thank you. Wait for a day when you’re no longer a germ factory and stay home to recuperate. Workplaces need healthy people to continue functioning, and if you show up coughing your germs all over the place, sickness is going to spread. Keep your office happy by keeping your germs at home.
- Disinfect – If you’re in the process of getting over an illness, bring disinfectant wipes to work with you. Kindly wipe down the common areas you touch. It’s simple human decency to avoid spreading your germs to the people with whom you work. By wiping down doorknobs, communal telephones, the office copy and fax machines, or toilet handles you’re avoiding infecting your co-workers.
- Proper Procedure – If you have a cough, it means you’re spreading germs, so use the proper procedure when you cough. Rather than hacking into your hand, bend your arm and cough into your elbow. That better prevents the spread of infectious disease and you’ll find that it’s a little bit less disgusting for you as well. Keep tissues on hand as well if you find you need to sneeze.
- Clean Up – If you’re using tissues, disinfectant wipes, or hand sanitizer don’t leave a mess behind you. Your used tissues are little germ bombs and if someone else if forced to clean up after you, then they can easily fall victim to your illness. Plus, spare the cleaning crew in your office the displeasure of having to pick up your tissues and other evidence of your sickness.
- Help Yourself – If you have found a cold remedy that works keep it up at work. Colds have a way of tricking you and making you think you feel better and then hitting you later in the day. Spare your office mates the moaning and groaning by keeping up with your medication regimen during your work day. Your misery doesn’t need to be shared with the entire office, so take your meds, sip your hot tea with honey, or suck on some cough drops but keep your discomfort to yourself.
The cold and flu season is unavoidable, especially if you have kids. You can pump your system full of vitamin C and every preventative that you can find, but a cold will find you when you least expect it. Do what you can to keep it away, but if you can’t then follow these rules to keep it out of your office.