By in Health & Fitness

Embracing my Inner Germaphobe!

Tis the season for germs, and with my daughter starting school this year she has been sick so many times I can't even count. I always tried to avoid germs but I was never a full germaphobe. Obviously if I knew someone was sick I'd keep my distance, and I made sure to wash my hands lot. Well after so many months of sickness in this house, I did read lots of health and wellness articles online and I learned that it's really a good idea to be a "germaphobe". Ok maybe you shouldn't be scared of everything and anything, but there are things I can do to *try* to keep germs at bay. I started these things in mid-December, we all healed up and we have not been sick since (cross-fingers!!). I know I can't stop everything but these are some things I personally have started doing, at least during the winter months, to avoid germs a little bit more.

  1. Wash Hands... a lot! I already washed my hands when regular people do, after going to the bathroom or before working with food, etc. Now I am making sure to spend more time doing it. I read over and over how you need to scrub for a good 20 seconds and I admit to being in a rush usually. So now i'm focusing more on making sure my hands are actually getting clean rather than just a quick scrub.
  2. Paper for doors... I saw people doing this my whole life and I sometimes did it when it public, but for the most part at work or other familiar places I was not doing this. Now I am! Not only that but I've been using the towel to turn off the sink and to open the door when I leave. Toss the towel in the garbage can right inside or outside the door and I feel like I just threw away a bunch of germs.
  3. Sanitize... At home I've been using my lysol wipes a lot more and I feel like it is part of the reason we all finally healed up after months of catching colds. During a regular week I wipe down everything once a week. But during a week where I'm really concerned with staying healthy (for events, parties, etc), I wipe down something almost every day - hitting high traffic spots multiple times throughout the week. Remotes, phones, computers, light switches, all wiped down and I think it helps. I do it again after anyone visits in the winter time, which isn't often around this season.
  4. Swap Towels... I've also been more conscious of how often I swap out towels. When we were sick, I started swapping out the hand towels every few days just to get rid of those germs and hope they would go away faster. Now that we are not sick (cross fingers!!) I swap the towels after people visit just in case they brought in germs.
  5. Change sheets / PJs / etc... the same goes for bed sheets and PJs. Before I would let my daughter wear the same PJs for a week. Now I make her pick a new pair every few days. When she's sick I do it even more often.
  6. Keeping the house clutter free in general... I do feel like there are more germs floating around when the house is just too messy or cluttered. I cleaned my daughters room from top to bottom when she was still getting over her sickness in December and it did seem to help her clear up. Getting rid of excess dust is one reason since that just irritates colds. It might just be psychological but I think a clean house has less places for germs to hide!

These are just a few of the things I've started doing and we are hoping to stay healthy the second half the school year! I know you can't really avoid everything and when my daughter is at school I have no idea what she touches or does, but I want to try my best at home to rid the house of germs and hope it has some positive affect.

For discussion:

Does this sound too germaphobe to you? Or is it just good general practice to avoid getting colds?

Is there anything else you personally do to try and keep germ free throughout the winter season?

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wolfgirl569 wrote on January 7, 2016, 5:52 PM

I dont do most of what you named. I feel we need the germs so we can build immunity to them. Also things like the lysol wipes kill off the good germs too.

AliCanary wrote on January 8, 2016, 8:52 PM

These are good tips, and I am glad that you aren't recommending "antibacterial" products, which actually make bacteria stronger! Plain old soap and warm water will do the trick. I didn't think of de-cluttering, but that's a great idea, also--fewer surfaces for germs to stick, and also clutter can trap dust, mold, and other allergens, and allergies can cause cold-like symptoms.