All of our hearts are hurting, but as we have seen through the past few days, we will recover together through perseverance and compassion for others. As our community comes to terms with the aftermath of the recent floods, here are a few safety tips:
- Open wounds and rashes exposed to flood waters can become infected. Be sure your tetanus shot is current (given within the last 7 years).
- There are many other micro-organisms in flood water, including Aeromonas, E. coli, Salmonella, and Staphylococcus. Aeromonas is bacteria that can lead to wound and skin infections, particularly if there are breaks in the skin exposed to flood water. This can be treated with an antibiotic. If you have an infected wound and you were exposed to muddy waters, please see your doctor immediately.
- Molds and mildew may affect asthmatics. If you need to be around it, wear a mask to help filter inhalants.
- Eating or drinking anything contaminated by flood water can cause serious disease. Consider all water to be unsafe until local authorities announce that the public water supply is safe. Throw out all food and other supplies that you suspect may have become contaminated or come into contact with floodwater. Do not use contaminated water for anything.
- Flood waters have displaced animals, including insects and reptiles. Seek immediate medical care for all animal bites.
- Always practice good hygiene (handwashing with antibacterial soap) after contact with flood waters. Practice safety ABOVE ALL ELSE.
Due to the magnitude of this natural disaster, we know that even if your home was not directly affected, you have family, friends, and coworkers who lost a lot. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you. We are open and here to help you if you have any questions or concerns. Please contact your physician if you have any medical concerns.