Tips to protect yourself and your family during flu season

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In Canada, the time for flu usually starts from late fall to winter. You can keep yourself and others safe by following these tips:

  1. Make your body stronger against sickness

    You can make your body stronger against all types of sickness by eating healthy food, doing exercise, and sleeping enough. Try to do this all year, not just during the flu time. Besides vitamin C, there are other things that can help like vitamin D, zinc, and selenium. Watch the video below to learn about other foods you can eat to make your body stronger:

    5 foods to keep your body strong against sickness, CBC

  2. Get a flu shot

    Getting a flu shot helps our body fight sickness. You can go to your doctor or the local health office, nursing station, pharmacy, ACCESS Centre, or the closest place where you can get a shot and ask what is best for you. Read the MHSAL page on Seasonal Flu to learn more about the flu shot.

  3. Use ways to keep safe

    Even though we don’t have to wear masks anymore, you can still wear one to keep safe. This is a good idea if you have health problems or live with someone who has health problems. Another good thing to do is to make sure there is good air flow at home and where you work.

    • Turn on ceiling fans to help air move around (make sure they’re pulling air upwards).
    • Buy a HEPA filter especially if you live with people who are weak.
    • Change your furnace filters.
    • Turn on fans in bathrooms and your stovetop when you have guests.
    • Open windows and screen doors to help fresh air move around.
  4. Cough and sneeze into your elbow

    This makes less virus particles go into the air. You should also cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. This keeps your family and people who are often around you safe. Make sure to throw away used tissues right away and in the right way. One thing we learned during the pandemic is that washing our hands well and often keeps us from getting sick. Make this a habit during fall and winter.

  5. Stay at home

    If you are not feeling well, talk to your doctor. Do what your doctor says and stay home, rest, and take the medicine they give you. Don’t go out unless you have to, even if it’s just to buy food or do a few things. You don’t want to make other people sick. You can also call the Health Links-Info Santé line at 204-788-8200. They will tell you what to do and where to go if you need to get tested. If you have very bad symptoms, you should call 911.

Article updated August 25, 2023.
Sources: Colliers- protecting yourself and others against respiratory illness (pdf); Seasonal flu, Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living; and The benefits of hand washing,

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