Flu season has arrived in the US, and it is one of the most severe outbreaks in recent history. This year the dominant strain is the Influenza B strain named Victoria, and health experts are saying this could be one of the most severe flu seasons in decades. The Victoria/B strain is especially harmful towards children, and the shot is only 58% effective against this strain. These numbers are especially scary for parents whose kids are in environments like schools where germs spread rapidly. The flu has a pretty quick incubation period with an average time to symptoms of two days.
Additionally, the virus becomes contagious a day after contact, which means you can spread it to others without even showing symptoms. The infectious period then lasts for an additional five to seven days after it begins. To reduce the risk of being exposed to the flu virus, there are some precautions you can take.
To adequately protect yourself from the flu, it is recommended that you get the flu shot every year. In the United States, it is standard for the vaccine to protect against four strains of the virus, generally H1N1, H3N2, and two Influenza B strains that change yearly. The CDC recommends that anyone over six months receive the shot. The shot still helps if the primary virus isn’t included in the formulation because there is usually more than one strain of the flu in circulation at once.
In addition to the vaccine, proper hand washing and disinfecting can kill the flu virus and reduce your risk of exposure. One improperly washed hand can contaminate every employee in your workplace by lunchtime, so you must follow proper hand washing protocol. The CDC recommends washing your hands for at least twenty seconds to ensure the virus is entirely removed. The use of an antimicrobial soap like Safetec’s SaniWash will also help remove the virus. Finally, a broad-spectrum disinfectant with fast kill claims is vital to remove the virus from surfaces. Safetec’s SaniZide Pro 1 kills the flu and 47 other microorganisms in just one minute and is safe on hard surfaces.
Make sure you are prepared this flu season, get your vaccine, learn hand washing technique, and disinfect your surfaces properly. Safetec’s SaniWash, Instant Hand Sanitizer, and Pro 1 Disinfectant will help you stay virus-free this flu season. For more information about our products, give us a call at 1(800)456-7077 or (716)895-1822 or visit our website safetec.com.