Cash Out on the Flu

The news has been a bit more comforting in recent days concerning the Swine Flu. That's all I seemed to think about when traveling through various airports this past week. (I seriously thought about donning a mask but decided against it at the last minute.) After all, it was tough not to react to all the media reports of a possible pandemic and fear the worst.

And now, hearing that this flu - similar to any seasonal flu - is far less deadly than initially feared has been a great relief.

But one thing that's good to think about, for all of us, is how best to protect ourselves and prevent the spread of germs, whether it be during a flu outbreak or not. One thing that kept crossing my mind as I exchanged money at the airports was this: who else touched that dollar bill?

If you, too, are wondering if a flu virus can ride along with George, then read this interesting report on SmartMoney.com. The answer confirmed what I already suspected: money can be dirty, indeed. Mixed with human mucus secretions, a flu virus has a hardier breeding ground and can hitch a ride on the bill for as long as 17 days. When the uninfected - or unsuspecting - person who touches the money during this time then touches their mouth or nose, the virus can then transfer to them.

My hands may be chapped from so much washing, but that's just what I did - and still do: wash, wash, wash. And I sing "happy birthday" a lot: if you're wondering about washing for a long enough time, singing this song twice will give you a good guideline.

How do you protect yourself against germs? Share your tips below!


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