Keep Yourself Safe Through
The introduction and continued use of vaccines has dramatically reduced rates of bacterial and viral infection which could have lead to sepsis. It is important for everyone, but especially children, to keep up-to-date on their vaccines. Talk to your family doctor if you’re not sure when you or your children require vaccinations.
The flu shot is an annual vaccine which is meant to fight the rapidly-mutating influenza virus. It is recommended that all people get their flu shots as influenza may progress to sepsis.
Washing hands frequently with soap and water can prevent the spread of infectious agents. Make sure to wash the front and back of both hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
Doctors recommend washing your hands before a meal, after using the washroom, before interacting with an infant, and if your hands are visibly dirty. In other cases, hand sanitizer may be used as a substitute.
Untreated infections are the primary cause of sepsis. Spotting infection early greatly reduces your risk of developing the condition.
Make sure to treat all wounds appropriately, keeping small and shallow wounds washed and covered. Larger and deeper injuries may need stitches, and you should seek a medical professional for advice and treatment. Be sure to inspect your wounds closely for signs of infection.
You can remember the signs of infection by the acronym SHARP:
S welling around the wound
H eat or pulsing from the area
A ches and pains at the site
R edness of surrounding skin
P us draining from the injury
If you have a bacterial infection and have already seen a doctor, you have probably been prescribed antibiotics. It is important to take this medication as recommended -- at the required time each day, with or without food. Take the full dose you are prescribed, even if you start to feel better part-way through. Never share antibiotics with family or friends.
If 72 hours have passed and your infection isn’t going away or is getting worse, seek a medical professional immediately. You may need to be treated with another type of antibiotic.