Your health is important during all stages of life and throughout the year. Phelps Health Family Nurse Practitioner Ariella Martin, who specializes in family medicine, offers six behaviors that can go a long way to help you achieve wellness and fight illnesses, such as the flu, during the winter months.
- Get your flu shot. While getting the vaccine does not prevent you from getting the flu, it can reduce your chances by up to 60%, as well as help you fight off or recover if you were to get the virus.
- Practice good hand hygiene. Germs are easily spread by both direct and indirect contact. Avoid touching your mouth, nose or eyes. We can greatly reduce our chances of picking up germs and viruses by frequently washing our hands with soap and water along with using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Disinfecting common surfaces is important since germs are able to survive for up to 72 hours.
- Stay hydrated by drinking enough water while also eating a well-balanced, healthy diet. Foods rich in vitamins, proteins and antioxidants can help us stay healthy by strengthening our immune system while also being able to fight off potential viruses and infections. Water can also help strengthen our immune system as well as help flush and rehydrate our bodies if we become sick.
- Stay active. Not only is routine exercise good for our bone and muscle growth, it can also help maintain a healthy weight as well as help us sleep, de-stress our bodies and increase our energy level.
- Allow your body to get enough rest and sleep. As important as it is to stay active, allowing our bodies to relax and regroup as well as getting adequate amounts of sleep per night is important to help our immune systems be strong and protect us from illnesses.
- Stay home if you are sick. Not only will you protect yourself but you will help others around you stay healthy, and if you know someone is sick, stay away and/or take proper precautions to protect yourself.
Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Ariella Martin started working for Phelps Health in 2008 as a patient care assistant on surgical orthopedics. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from Maryville University in 2010. Martin obtained a master’s degree as a Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) in 2013 from Central Methodist University. She graduated in 2016 from Maryville University with a master’s degree to become a FNP. Learn more about Ariella by visiting phelpshealth.org/doctors/ariella-martin-fnp.