1. B.Y.O….P?

           Whether you realize it or not, during the course of a day, you probably use multiple pens that have been touched by many other people. From signing a check at the bank to leaving your server a tip to filling out a luggage tag at the airport, every time you use a public writing instrument, you’re exposing yourself to germs that others may have left behind.  To avoid this exposure, get in the habit of sanitizing your own pen at the beginning of the day, and taking it with you wherever you go.

     2)    GO (S)TEAM!

            The warm steam that comes off of a warm beverage or a bowl of soup stimulates the cilia -- the fine hairs in your nose and airway -- that keep pathogens at bay.  Plus, tea and vegetable soups contain lots of antioxidants that provide your body with the nutrients it needs to be healthy and strong.


            Viruses can live on hard surfaces for up to 48 hours, which means that common areas in the workplace -- like your break room’s coffee pot, fridge and microwave -- can be crawling with germs.  Plus, if you eat finger foods after you’ve touched a germy surface, you’re that much more likely to catch a coworker’s cold or flu.  Sanitize breakroom surfaces before you eat there, or bring your own coffee cup and pre-made snacks that spare you from encountering this common cold and flu season culprit.

        4)  GET YOUR ZZZZ’S

             People who get 7 or less hours of sleep each night have triple the rate of getting sick when exposed to a virus compared to people who get 8 hours each night or more.  So, especially in fall and winter, make sleep a priority to make sure your body’s immune system gets all the rest it needs to be able to fight your flu season battles for you!

And, of course, we recommend that all of our patients get a flu shot as early in flu season as possible!  To schedule your flu shot today, or if you start to feel under the weather, make an online appointment or walk in and we’ll get you taken care of!

Sarah Thebarge MMSc, PA-C Sarah Thebarge earned her physician assistant degree at Yale School of Medicine, and then studied journalism at Columbia School of Journalism. She has been a physician assistant and a freelance journalist since 2004. In addition to caring for patients at Golden Gate Urgent Care, Sarah frequently volunteers her medical skills in the developing world. Her writing has appeared in Huffington Post, USA Today and National Geographic, and her blog was featured on She is the author of the memoir The Invisible Girls and the upcoming book WELL: Healing our Beautiful, Broken World from a Hospital in West Africa. She currently lives in the Mission District of San Francisco.

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