SUFFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Thursday marked the third day in a row that Suffolk Christian Academy closed because of a contagious illness.

Although its unclear what is making faculty, staff and students sick, officials say its contagious.

13News Now learned some ways to help people avoid the spreading of germs.

"It's always good advice to do what your mother told you. Wash your hands, every time certainly after using the bathroom. Before you eat," said Dr. Scott Miller, at Sentara Leigh Hospital.

According to Suffolk Christian's Facebook page 14 faculty/staff members are sick.

Many schools and offices have shared spaces where germs can easily be passed from one person to another.

"Walking down a stairway holding a rail. Which is what you should do, you probably ought to go sanitize your hands," said Miller.

Sometimes its hard to avoid to avoid catching a cold, Dr. Miller tells 13NewsNow there are some signs you should look for when deciding whether or not to stay home. That includes fever, body aches, and diarrhea.