Fall is just around the corner and the kids are already back to school – and you know what that means…increased risk of catching whatever illness-du-jour is making its rounds. Kids – you got to love ‘em, but wow! They can be gross without even trying! Even when they’ve been “taught better,” they’ll think nothing of letting a germy friend sip from their juice box straw, or they’ll rub their as-yet-undiscovered, conjunctivitis-ridden eye and proceed to touch just about everything.
Kids aren’t the only ones…I’ve seen plenty of grown-ups with sketchy, germ-promoting behaviors. I worked in a fancy high-rise office building for several years and was astounded at the things I’d witness. Everything from skipping hand-washing in the restroom to – gasp! I only WISH I was making this up– flossing in the elevator. You read it right. FLOSSING, IN THE ELEVATOR. I’m still trying to mentally recover from that last one – and I left the building permanently four years ago!
It’s tough to be Moxie – or even nice – when you’re sick, so to help you combat all the nastiness that will try to take hold of you (and everyone else) in the coming months, Moxie Girl has some tips. First of all…
WASH YOUR HANDS!
Yes, it’s basic – but SO important! I used to see a doctor who told me that when she was in pre-med, she had a professor who firmly believed that almost ALL common contagious illnesses could be prevented with appropriately frequent and proper hand-washing. So much so, that if a student of his turned up with a cold it would be an automatic 5% lowering of the student’s grade in his class. Talk about adding insult to injury – or in this case, illness. Ouch!
And in case you are wondering, there IS a proper way to wash your hands. You’re welcome!
Cough Like a Pro
Certain professions require extensive exposure to the general public. All the super-savvy healthcare professionals, flight attendants, teachers and servers I know would NEVER cough into their hands. The pros cough into the crooks of their arms, so as not to spread germs. Why? Well, they won’t be touching you, or your food, or probably anything else with the crooks of their arms, will they? Nope. They will, however, probably be using their hands for those things.
I know I grew up hearing “cover your mouth when you cough” and I did, with my hand. And so did the adults who were telling me that, so, monkey-see, monkey-do, I suppose. But do us all a favor and start retraining yourself – and your family and friends to bury that cough in the crook of your arm instead of turning your hands into germ-delivery devices. “I would LOVE a big, fat handful of your germs!” said no one, ever.
Kill ‘Me All!
You can’t kill ALL the germs – but you can make an astounding difference in the volume of germs waiting for an opportunity to “blossom.” Bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms, collectively known as “germs”, are literally everywhere. They don’t ALL make us sick – in fact, we even need some of them to stay healthy. Cold and flu season is no time to give any germs the benefit of the doubt, though. Eradicating household germs may seem like a daunting task, especially if you’ve got a family, but Moxie Girl has a quick way to knock out the majority of them by taking a regular shot at the places they most commonly hang out.
Again, it’s impossible to create a sterile environment in your home – believe me, I’ve tried! But doing a quick walk through and cleaning common points of infection in the house once or twice a day with disinfectant wipes will absolutely reduce the chances of the creeping crud spreading to your entire crew.
Common Points of Infection
What ARE the most common points of infection, you ask? Well, basically anything a human touches, starting with the knob on the front door. So grab your disinfectant wipes, and tackle these points:
Doorknobs – Inside the house and outside. Arcadia doors are no exception.
TV and other device remotes
Light and ceiling fan switches and pulls
Cabinet and drawer pulls – especially in the kitchen and bath areas
Appliance handles and doors – Refrigerator, washer/dryer, microwave, toaster oven, coffee maker – all the things!
Faucet and toilet handles and shower door pulls
Anything else you think may be a common point of infection in your home (you know better than we do what goes on at your place!)
BTW, Moxie Girl ran across a “recipe” for DIY disinfectant wipes – and a cute DIY dispenser for them. This looks fun and functional – thanks popsugar.com!
One More Thing… Is that Water Hot Enough?
Be sure your dishes are being washed and rinsed in water that’s at least 120 degrees. Most automatic dishwashers also have a sanitation cycle which puts your dishes through a 180-degree rinse. If washing “by hand” consider adding an extra manual sanitizing step – it’s simple! After an appropriately hot and soapy wash, dip dishes – and especially eating utensils – in a solution of one-gallon hot water with 1 to 3 teaspoons of liquid bleach added.
Enjoying our blogs, but thinking your home could use some specialized assistance? Moxie Girl would love to help – just hit the FREE CONSULTATION button on our homepage, and we’ll be in touch when it’s most convenient for YOU!