November is...

Prematurity Awareness Month

PRETERM LABOR & PREMATURE BIRTH

 

 

Even if you do everything right during pregnancy, you can still have preterm labor and premature birth. Preterm labor is labor that starts too early, before 37 weeks of pregnancy.

Premature babies may have more health problems or need to stay in the hospital longer than babies born on time. Some of these babies also face long-term health effects, like problems that affect the brain, lungs, hearing or vision.

Learn the signs and symptoms of preterm labor and what to do if they happen to you. If you do begin labor early, there are treatments that may help stop your labor.

Learn more at CDC

Holiday Celebrations & Travel

As many people in the United States begin to plan for fall and winter holiday celebrations, CDC offers the following considerations to help protect individuals and their families, friends, and communities from COVID-19.

 

These considerations are meant to supplement—not replace—any state, local, territorial, or tribal health and safety laws, rules, and regulations with which holiday gatherings must comply.

 

When planning to host a holiday celebration, you should assess current COVID-19 levels in your community to determine whether to postpone, cancel, or limit the number of attendees.

Follow these tips to reduce your risk of being exposed to, getting, or spreading COVID-19 during the celebration:

Social distance and limit close contact

  • Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet or more from people you don’t live with. Be particularly mindful in areas where it may harder to keep this distance, such as restrooms and eating areas.

  • Avoid using restroom facilities at high traffic times, such as at the end of a public event.

  • Avoid busy eating areas, such as restaurants during high volume mealtimes, if you plan to eat out at a restaurant.

  • Minimize gestures that promote close contact. For example, do not shake hands, bump elbows, or give hugs. Instead wave and verbally greet others.

Wear masks

  • Wear a mask at all times when around people who don’t live in your household to reduce the risk of spreading the virus.

  • Avoid singing, chanting, or shouting, especially when not wearing a mask and within 6 feet of others.

Do not use costume masks in place of cloth masks

  • Do not use a costume mask (such as for Halloween) as a substitute for a cloth mask unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers your mouth and nose and doesn’t leave gaps around your face.

  • Do not wear a costume mask over a cloth mask because it can be dangerous if the costume mask makes it hard to breathe. Instead, consider using a Halloween-themed cloth mask.

Limit contact with commonly touched surfaces or shared items

Wash hands

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.

Keep safe around food and drinks

Currently, there is no evidence to suggest that handling food or eating is associated with directly spreading COVID-19. It is possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object, including food, food packaging, or utensils that have the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. However, this is not thought to be the main way that the virus is spread. Remember, it is always important to follow good hygiene to reduce the risk of illness from common foodborne germs.

  • Make sure everyone washes their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds before and after preparing, serving, and eating food. Use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.

  • Instead of potluck-style gatherings, encourage guests to bring food and drinks for themselves and for members of their own household only.

  • Limit people going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared or handled, such as in the kitchen or around the grill, if possible.

  • Wear a mask while preparing or serving food to others who don’t live in your household.

  • If serving any food, consider having one person serve all the food so that multiple people are not handling the serving utensils.

  • Use single-use options or identify one person to serve sharable items, like salad dressings, food containers, plates and utensils, and condiments.

  • Avoid any self-serve food or drink options, such as buffets or buffet-style potlucks, salad bars, and condiment or drink stations. Use grab-and-go meal options, if available.

  • If you choose to use any items that are reusable (e.g., seating covers, tablecloths, linen napkins), wash and disinfect them after the event.

  • Look for healthy food and beverage options, such as fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and low or no-calorie beverages, at holiday gatherings to help maintain good health.

Holiday travel

Traveling increases the chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. Use information from the following webpages to decide whether to go on holiday travel:

If you decide to travel, follow these safety measures during your trip to protect yourself and others from COVID-19:

  • Wear a mask in public settings, like on public and mass transportation, at events and gatherings, and anywhere you will be around other people.

  • Avoid close contact by staying at least 6 feet apart (about 2 arms’ length) from anyone who is not from your household.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol).

  • Avoid contact with anyone who is sick.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Learn more

Healthy Start Coalition of Seminole County is a 501c3 nonprofit organization incorporated in 2014.

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