Winter is here, and for many of us, it’s a time of endless colds, coughing, and flu-like misery.
We’ve covered the flu in detail here on our blog, but this week we decided to tackle some easy ways to keep your immune system strong.
1. Stop Pulling All-Nighters
Sleep: you need it.
Continued sleep loss takes a toll on your immune system and leaves you more susceptible to illness.
Studies show that lack of adequate sleep or lack of high-quality sleep can negatively impact your body’s ability to fight illness. In fact, during a good night’s sleep, your body produces proteins called cytokines that you need when you have an illness or infection. If you aren’t sleeping enough, you can’t produce these important proteins.
Shoot for 7-8 hours of sleep per night.
2. Keep Stress Under Control
Stress is detrimental to your immune system. In study after study, stress is linked to infection and illness. Over time, chronic stress suppresses the body’s immune system and has even been linked to several serious illnesses.
It’s easy to talk about the importance of stress control. It’s another thing to actually do it.
Most researchers agree that regular exercise has a variety of stress-relieving properties. Exercise improves cardiovascular performance. It also releases endorphins that help control the stress response.
It’s also important to indulge in your own personal stress-relief. Maybe you enjoy crafting, working on your car or gardening. Whatever your hobby is, it’s important to make time for it.
3. Wash Your Hands Regularly
Winter time sees an uptick in colds and other illnesses because we’re spending more time indoors–where germs are abundant. You might not be able to avoid staying inside more when it’s cold, but you can control how often you wash your hands.
Make sure you’re washing your hands with antibacterial soap regularly throughout the day. This is especially important if you work in a school or office in close proximity to other people.
If you can’t wash your hands with soap and water regularly, invest in an antibacterial hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol.
This will help you cut down on the amount of germs in your vicinity throughout the day.
If you do find yourself suffering from a seasonal illness or infection, it’s important to have a trusted urgent care clinic nearby.
Physicians Urgent Care is proud to be a trusted provider of urgent care services for the Nashville area and beyond.
Find a Physicians Urgent Care location near you or contact us at 615-472-1550 to learn more about our services.