Flu Prevention Tips & Apps 4 iPhones & Smartphones

iPhone App Flu While, I'm sneezing over my keyboard that is filled with germs suffering from the latest flu bug, I thought I could help  those who haven't caught it, yet, with guidelines and apps.

First off, someone who had the flu showed me some videos on her iPhone, I held the iPhone and didn't wash my hands- my bad.  Yes, I should have gotten a flu shot. Another problem I realized is that I have been wearing the same earphones listening to music while sick in bed without cleaning them, yuck. Then I was coughing while talking on my landline as well as my smartphone and haven't cleaned either, double yuck. Phones can spread the dreaded staph bacteria, which can cause everything from skin infections to meningitis. The germs come from faces and hands.

Taking the phone with me in the gym, I put it down on the seat where many others have left their germs. The good news is that you can prevent the flu and even have some fun while you do it because your cell phone has 18 times the amount of bacteria found on a toilet handle.

Apps Fight Flu and Show Outbreaks

  • FACEBOOK: Flu-Ville won first place in the CDC Flu app contest. Influenza is spreading throughout residents as you build and maintain a growing town. Vaccinate your residents, promote healthy habits and learn about how to prevent the spread of influenza.
  • FACEBOOK: Fluspotter lets you spot the flu and warn friends about it with a quick status update. This Facebook app features an interactive map with current flu outbreak data from the CDC. The map also shows where your friends are located, so you can monitor how the flu affects people close to you.
  • Facebook Help I Have the Flu -  checks friends' status updates for words, such as "flu" "sneezing" and "coughing," and the time reported.  A parody was shown on the Tonight Show, last night.  It is not an iPhone app, as Leno demonstrates, but could be used on Facebook using an iPhone.(video follows).
  • iPhone - CDC Official FluView Influenza-Like Illness Activity app shows Influenza-Like Illness (ILI) Activity Levels across the US, reports ILI trends over several weeks, and gives on-demand access to state health department websites for local surveillance information.
  • iPhone/iOS Flu Defender is an interactive solution that provides all the critical information you need to protect yourself against the flu.
  •  The Fight the Flu mobile app for your iPhone gives you a powerful tool to help protect yourself and your family against the flu. Track flu activity in your area, receive free alerts, learn the symptoms of flu, and what to do to help protect yourself and your loved ones against flu.
  • Mobile Web - Germ tracker mobile shows a map of outbreaks near your location that have been reported via social media such as Twitter.
  • Android Flu Near You - lets you find and report flu activity in your area.

Below are tips from Dr. Geeta Nayyar, AT&T’s Chief Medical Information Officer:

  • Consider getting a flu shot. If you are sick and experiencing flu symptoms, do not share your phone and stay home to avoid infecting others.
  • Avoid sick people. If you share your phone with friends or family be careful, you may be sharing more than just your phone, you may be spreading a virus.
  • Wash your hands frequently.  If soap and water are not available to wash hands then use disinfectant like hand sanitizer.
  • Wash your phone. If you think it has been contaminated, disinfect your phone. Use a wrung-out disinfectant wipe or spray a paper towel with disinfectant. Don’t spray the phone. (Remember that washing your hands and then touching a dirty phone or keypad is self limiting).
  •  Try using a Bluetooth device or other hands-free headset, minimizing your keypad-to-face exposure
  • Don’t – please don’t – use your phone in a restroom, put on the floor or sink.