• nurse
    How to stay Healthy- lessen the chances of you and your family catching and spreading the Flu Virus both seasonal and H1N1 (Swine). 

    The only portals of entry are the nostrils and mouth/throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it's almost impossible not coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is.

    While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps can be practiced:

    1. Frequent hand-washing.


    2. "Hands-off-the-face" approach.  Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat or bathe). 

    3. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (1/2-1 teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water or use Listerine if you don't trust salt). H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms.  Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one.  Don't underestimate this simple,
     inexpensive and powerful preventative method.

    4. Clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt waters/saline. Ocean nose drops can be purchased at any pharmacy).  Not everybody may be good at using a Neti pot, but blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton swabs dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.

    5. Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C.  If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption. 

    6. Drink as much of warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc) as you can.  Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction.  They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

    -Nurse Latimore, RN BSN


    Related websites for more information:

    ·    24 hour Flu hotline 1-877-FLU-4141 or 1-877-358-4141 provided by  Mo. Dept of Health and Senior Services 
    ·    Missouri Poison Center: December 2012 Newsletter 
    ·    www.flu.gov   or call 1-800-CDC-INFO or 1-800-232-4636
    ·    Your local Health Dept.
    ·    FightTheFluMo.com
    ·    St. Louis County Health Dept.- http://www.stlouisco.com/doh/
    ·    Missouri Poison Center: December 2012 Newsletter  
    Barnes-Jewish Hospital Free Mammograms Flyer
    Step by Step Walking Club Newsletter 
    Medication Disposal Information