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Cold Prevention – Tips And Tidbits (Part 1)

Written by Courteney

Posted on March 2, 2016 at 6:57 pm

Young businesswoman with a seasonal cold and flu

 

A sick person can sneeze literally millions of virus particles into the air, which can make cold prevention pretty tricky. But luckily there are things we can do to minimize our chances of getting sick during cold and flu season.

Steer Clear Of Obvious Carriers

Adults catch 2-3 colds on average annually, but perhaps those numbers could be decreased a little if we all took more preventative measures. If you work in an office or another public environment, be sure to wash your hands (for about 20 seconds) several times throughout the day, especially before eating or touching your face. If you succumb to the germy habit of nail-biting, stop now. We all know to steer clear of those who are coughing and sneezing, but many people don’t realize just how easily viruses are transmitted. About 80% of contagious illnesses are spread through person-to-person contact. A gesture as simple as a handshake or high five with an infected person can gain you a cold. Even touching an infected surface and touching your face can do the job.

Cold Carrier Etiquette

If you are sick with the common cold, you should stay at home to rest up while it is in full swing until you can better control those coughs and sneezes. When you do go to work, clean and sterilize surfaces frequently and wash your hands or use hand sanitizer frequently, especially after touching your face, or if you must make contact with another person. When at home, be sure to throw out contaminated tissues directly after use. This may seem like a weird tip but tissues left lying around will create a germ free-for-all, putting your family members at greater risk of catching your bug.

General Lifestyle Tips

Exercise, diet, and sleep also have bearing on the common cold, just as they do with almost any illness. It is always a good idea to maintain a healthy lifestyle including getting routine exercise and making sure you are getting enough sleep and rest. Diet is also an important factor, there are various vitamin and mineral rich foods you should be adding to your plate such as leafy green veggies and vitamin rich fruit. A tip-top system will be better at staving off infectious intruders.

Kids And Colds

Young kids are the most frequent catchers of colds, racking up approximately 6-10 a year! According to Pulsus, “Young children have more colds than older children and adults because they haven’t built up immunity (defenses) to the more than 100 different cold viruses that are around.” Young children also catch more colds than adolescents or adults because of such close proximity to their little peers in elementary schools paired with the fact that young children simply aren’t that concerned about preventative hygiene.

Teaching Children Preventative Habits

It is no secret that children are usually the culprits in contracting and spreading the family cold, but there are measures you can take to keep your child (and your family) safer against viruses. Many children don’t wash their hands correctly – or even at all after using the bathroom or getting them dirty. It’s important to instill proper hygiene habits in our little ones, such as how to wash their hands with soap under warm water for about the time it takes to sing 2 run-throughs of the happy birthday song in their heads. We can also stress to them the importance of removing themselves from a group of other kids if they have to cough or sneeze, or if one of the kids in the group is openly coughing and sneezing.

Educate Little Ones About Major Germ Hiding Places

According to WebMD, “A 2005 study of germs in schools found that classroom water fountain spigots and plastic cafeteria trays were the germiest spots in school. The spigot had 2,700,000 and the tray 33,800 bacteria per square inch, compared with 3,200 on the restroom toilet seat.” This statistic illustrates just how important it is to educate our little ones about taking precautions in very germy areas such as fountains. Try filling up a water bottle for the child to cut down on exposure to such places.

Thanks for visiting DocChat for our cold prevention tips. For suggestions on what to do when you can’t prevent a cold, be sure to check back tomorrow for cold management tips and tidbits!

 

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