As we approach the inevitably cold Minnesota winter months, cold and flu season comes along with it. Cold and flu prevention for seniors is especially important, as for them a minor cold can quickly spiral into a life-threatening illness and have serious repercussions. 

In 2020, more than ever before, there is the added threat of COVID-19, which people will be even more susceptible to if they have a cold or the flu.

If you take care of an elderly person, then there are a few things you can do to make sure they stay safe and healthy during the colder months. Here are a few tips for you and any elderly people in your care this winter.

Check in on Flu Shots

The most obvious flu prevention strategy is making sure flu shots are kept up to date, for both you, the elderly person in your care, and anyone else who comes into regular contact with them. Getting the vaccination is not a guarantee of a flu-free winter, but it definitely helps!

Look After Your Own Health

You can’t help anyone if you yourself have come down with a nasty cold; even worse, you might end up infecting your care recipient, yourself! 

Make sure you get lots of sleep, avoid excessive time spent out in the cold, and keep an eye on any early symptoms in your own body. If you do start getting sick, see if you can find someone to cover for your care responsibilities until you feel better.

Stay on Top of Cleaning the Living Space

Cold and flu are both passed along through germs in the air and on surfaces, so make sure living spaces are clean, for elderly flu prevention. 

Wipe down surfaces regularly, keep eating utensils clean, and try to reduce the amount of common space between people from outside of the household. 

Know the Early Symptoms

Knowing what to look for in a cold or flu is also vital. Watch out for ongoing sneezing, coughing, or difficulty breathing and be sure to seek medical attention if you’re ever unsure.

Eat the Right Foods

Even just packing nutrients and vitamins into the food elderly people eat can help with cold prevention. Choose foods with plenty of zinc and B12 to help their bodies be strong enough to fight off nasty colds.

If you’re caring for an elderly individual and are looking for more resources, get in touch with the team at Best Care! We are here to help you.