Every year we have bacterial issues and viral flus and colds going around. Some years we get a new one ("novel") that is in a form that human systems have not been exposed to so therefore do not have previous immunity to them. Here is a practical guide for ways I help my body have a greater opportunity to avoid these problems.
Some considerations first are that viral agents can incubate in a person for an average of 2 to 4 weeks before a person comes down with symptoms of the viral problem. Also note that not everyone has symptoms because their immune system is humming along doing what it was created to do- protect you. Some people may have mild symptoms and not recognize that they are actually ill with something of significance. While a person is infected, whether they are incubating (the viral agent is replicating in the system), have symptoms or do not have symptoms they are contagious the entire time with the ability to spread viral activity as they cough, sneeze, touch things after touching their mouth, etc. Also note that corona types of viruses live an average of 9 days in the environment. Those can be things like door handles, your steering wheel, counter surfaces, bathrooms, money- bills and change, shopping carts or baskets, the keypads on debit/credit card payment machines, fuel pumps, etc. Remember that even if a person (or you) has already had whatever it is going around, when you are exposed again- you may not get it again but you will be carrying it and able to spread it around. I know you didn't want to hear that. But in light of protecting the fragile and wellness compromised people in our lives we need to know this!
Here are practical things I do to reduce my need in having to deal with viruses.
First I avoid public situations where possible. The less time one spends around groups of people obviously the less exposure. I extend the amount of time between grocery store and feedstore outings as much as possible. I bank online rather than exposing myself to tellers who get exposed to everything a community has to offer via close contact with people and handling money all day long.
When I do go out I wear latex gloves. My gloves can touch everything (and I pay attention to NOT touch my face or my things) and once I leave the store I can take them off (I strip them off inside out) and dump them in the trash. When I'm at the gym I can use their sanitizing wipes on my gloves all I want without concerning myself with the carcinogens in the wipe on my skin, as well as using it on the equipment before and after I use it.
I also like to use homemade hand sanitizer- I add three drops of antiviral types essential oil to a tablespoon of aloe gel (I prefer scraping the gel from my own plant as there aren't additives). Mix that up and you have your own hand sanitizer. I keep some in the car and some at home. You can get your essential oils here (I am an internationally certified aromatherapist) : https://www.firmeadowllc.com/store/c3/Essential_Oils.html
If you have children under six years old stick to using lavender and tea tree oil. If they are six or older and don't have liver conditions then you can use the other choices but double dilute the amounts until they are 100 lbs (add two tablespoons of gel to the three drops of eo). Favorite oils for these types of things with me are basil, cinnamon, clove,eucalyptus, lavender, peppermint, oregano, tea tree and Thyme linalool essential oils. Remember if you have cats keep essential oil use away from them.
Face masks- do they work? Yes and No. Well that's not so much help! Yes, if you are sick, wear one to protect others as you cough or sneeze or exhale viral vapor and do your best to stay home. If you are not sick then wearing one won't protect your eyes from receiving viral vapor. Also a mask needs to be medical grade and seal tightly to protect your nose and mouth from inhaling viral agents. HOWEVER, one can put a drop of one of the above essential oils onto a face mask for additional support as you inhale that goodness.
At home, you can put a drop or two of an oil into a stainless or glass container and pour very hot water (remember to keep out of reach of children and pets!) over it to get the vapor into the air to inhale it's goodness and reduce exposure in the air. If you have permission at work to use a diffuser those work nicely there. REMEMBER to also clear your air as you are recovering and after you are well along with disinfecting surfaces, door handles, toilet handles, faucet handles etc around your house. In my house I use a squirt of liquid soap mixed with about 60 drops of one of the above essential oils in a quart (2 lbs) of water, shaken real well.
I also support my body with herbs every single day during these epidemic time periods to give my body some tools to try to avoid these types of problems and to also try to keep my body from harboring and thus spreading these types of things to others. Some of my favorites include taking Super Immune Garlic formula (which has more than garlic!) both before and after I am in public areas (and in between if I'm gone six or more hours) as well as three times a day if I am just working a long at home.
I also like Respiratory Support Syrup (https://www.firmeadowllc.com/store/p474/Extract_Respiratory_Syrup_4_oz_Dr_C.html)
Herbal C which is a wonderful whole herb form of plants with traditionally high values of Vitamin C (rather than the chemical ascorbic acid) and the amazing Lung and Bronchial support can be found on this page :https://www.firmeadowllc.com/store/c6/Human_Supplements_%26_Teas.html
Wishing you much health and happiness and wisdom!