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Tips to Keep Your Family Safe from Cold and Flu

By Sara Butler

You want to keep your family healthy all year long, but especially when cold and flu season comes around -- and it always manages to come around. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have some guidelines you can combine with your own know-how to help you stay healthy this season. Here are some tips to keep your family safe from the cold and flu.

Get Back to Basics

You can't live in a bubble and prevent all illnesses, but you can do a few basic things to lower your risk. You should:

  • Encourage frequent hand washing - This is the number one thing you can do to avoid illness. Wash your hands often with warm water and mild soap to help keep germs from spreading.
  • Avoid contact with the sick - Everyone in your home should avoid contact with anyone showing symptoms of illness. If someone falls ill in your home, then consider keeping them separate from the rest of the people in the home, as much as you can.
  • Don't share - You usually want to encourage your kids to share, but you may want to reconsider this cold and flu season. Don't share drinks, utensils, or food.
  • Cover your cough - Teach your kids to cover their mouths when they cough and you make sure to do the same too.
  • Don't touch your eyes - If you want to keep germs out of your body, limit how much you touch your face, especially in public.
  • Change hand towels - If you use hand towels in the kitchen and bathroom, change them frequently. If someone in the house is sick, give them their own towel to use.
  • Deep clean - After an illness has passed, disinfect household surfaces and don't forget that television remote, those doorknobs, or light switches.

Keep Germs Away

There are a few things you can do to reduce the germs you bring into your home, too. You should:

  • Take shoes off at the door - You track a lot of stuff in on your shoes, so be sure to take off shoes in the entryway and make your home a no-shoe zone.
  • Wipe down backpacks and bags - Any kind of bag, purse, diaper bag, backpack, or gym bag should be hung up when you get home and wiped down with a disinfectant cloth.
  • Keep up the car - Especially in cold and flu season, periodically wipe down surfaces inside your car to help keep the germs away.

You can't control everything that comes your way during cold and flu season, but you can do your best to keep you and yours as healthy as possible!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Northbrook, Ill.

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