Its back to school season, which means that its actually getting to be cold and flu season. Along with a backpack full of new and interesting homework assignments, your child may be bringing a little something extra to the door next week. Nearly one fifth of the U.S. population attends or works in the school system making the school a prime site for the incubation and transfer of disease epidemics.
The most common of these diseases is the rhinovirus or the common cold. It is an endlessly mutating virus that cannot be cured with antibiotics, but instead roams the halls of school building and lies in wait for your children and their immune systems.
The germs that cause colds can live for up to a full two hours once they have been transferred to a surface such as a doorknob or table. They live where your children live. The idea that you can completely avoid exposure to these germs is unrealistic. It is even more unrealistic to believe that you can arrange for your children to avoid them. They're everywhere after all. So what can you do to protect your children and your home? The answer is simple. You must practice the basic methods of cold prevention and teach your children to do the same. You must prepare to wage war against this omnipresent disease.
* The best way to combat cold and flu season is to avoid exposure where you can and to kill germs where you cannot.
* Begin by avoiding obviously sick people and the things that they touch. Teach your children to not to share food, for example.
* Next, be aware of what you touch. Try not to touch your face with your hands since the eyes, nose, and mouth are the areas of your body that are most vulnerable to infection. Your hands are one of the most active parts of your body when it comes to germs.
* Wash your hands regularly and correctly with hot water and soap. Scrub for fifteen to twenty seconds when you do so. You can also opt to use a hand sanitizer with an alcohol base, but an antibiotic hand sanitizer will not help to combat colds.
* Similarly, you should make sure that high traffic surfaces in the home are cleaned frequently and thoroughly with alcohol or bleach.
* Finally, if you feel a cough or a sneeze coming on, try to catch it in a tissue so as to protect the people around you. If you cannot then cover your mouth and nose using your elbows and not your hands. This will keep you from spread germs from your mouth or nose to your hands and then to whatever you touch next.
The last thing you can do to protect yourself and your children from colds is to make sure that you are all healthy. This means you need to eat right, exercise, and get enough sleep during cold and flu season.