Nurses are quite a special breed during flu season, using everything from obsessive, germ-a-phobic behavior to shamanic, home-brewed remedies to ward off infection. The craziest instance of all, though, is when a nurse takes no extra precautions and is shocked to wake up with the sniffles!
At Scrubs, we want to make sure nurses are staying well as the pesky flu virus finds its way into homes and hospitals this fall.
Here’s a quick, 30-second guide to avoiding the flu, including a surprising video that may be just the thing to gross you out enough (it’s not easy!) to take extra precautions.
1. Don’t make it so easy for the flu virus!
Here are the top 10 reasons nurses get sick:
- Not washing our hands
- Not enough sleep
- Too much work
- Not drinking enough fluids
- Not cleaning our stethoscopes
- Using one pen for all patients
- Being too clean
- Allowing too much stress
- A night out on the town
- Arrogant ignorance
Get snarky commentary on each item above here.
2.Â Do these “crazy,” precautionary things (they work!)
- Pay for everything with credit or debit
- Avoid mass transit transportation
- Take the stairs
- Keep a personal stash of disinfectant wipes
- Wear long sleeves everywhere
- Avoid salad bars and buffets
- Refuse/deny anyone who asks to use your cell phone
Sound like “out there” tactics? Get the rationale.
3. Use your ears to cover your mouth!
You don’t need to be staring into the tired, watery eyes of a sick person to know that contagion has moved into your zone of personal space. When you’re walking down the hospital halls or running errands at the mall after your shift, use your ears to pick up warning signals!
Check out this Auditory Guide to Coughs to fine tune your flu-avoidance radar.
4. Venture beyond the medicine cabinet!
Nurses’ top picks for cold/flu remedies when all else fails:
- Neti Pots
- Naked Juices
- Gargling with warm saltwater
- Fish oil capsules
- A dab (not more!) of hydrogen peroxide with some water (1:1) to dab on your tonsils if they are sore, but not swollen.
Get the full list of nurses’ favorite cold/flu remedies.
5. Respect the sneeze guard!
Ever heard of Puff Daddy? Yes, he’s a rapper. He’s also a robot with very poor etiquette. He’s coughing on everyone around him and spraying them with germs! See how far his sputum can reach (you’ll want to know because it’s a simulation of a real person’s cough!).