Most think the winter months bring on the colds and flu season, but a lot of sicknesses start in the fall. It’s the season when people are in closer contact with each other inside and the air changes both inside and out. The average adult catches 2-4 colds each year, so it’s important to take some steps to help prevent a season full of sickness. Here are some tips to take control of the upcoming cold and flu season.

Wash Your Hands – Lather with antibacterial soap for at least 30 seconds before eating and after using the restroom. Have a little brush handy for scrubbing under your fingernails where germs linger. Don’t rely on hand sanitizers as they are not effective in fighting colds and flu and if you do use it, make sure you wash your hands after every 3rd or 4th time.

Keep hydrated – Drink a lot of fluids throughout your day. There are a lot of great teas out there but simple black and green are healthy choices.

Clean “Hot Spots” – Keep items clean that are touched a lot with the hands such as refrigerator handles, remote controls, and doorknobs.

Take the Sunshine VitaminVitamin D is great for many reasons and is known to help regulate the immune system and enhances immunity all around.

Change your toothbrush – If you have been sick, toss out the toothbrush and treat yourself to a new one. Germs often linger on the bristles as well as the handle.

Improve indoor air quality – Bad indoor air can trigger coughing, sore throat, itchy eyes and can make breathing difficult. Change your air filters monthly and vacuum twice a week. If you can, open a window or door once in a while to let some fresh air in.

Relaxation and rest are always good for the soul and body. Find ways to relax with family and friends, watch a favorite movie, read a new book, or take a yoga class.