This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Reckitt Benckiser and Sam’s Club. All opinions are 100% mine.
Before embarking on motherhood, I was blissfully unaware of just how many surfaces cold and flu germs can not only lurk, but thrive! Now with four kids, I know better. I've been there, done that, and got the t-shirt. As a seasoned mom, I prefer to attack germs where they're at, before they infect my crew. Because, really, there isn't anything fun about a house full of cranky sick kids!
Moms, as we head into cold and flu season, know where those pesky cold and flu germs may be lurking, and annihilate them!
Read on to learn about the 5 surprising surfaces where cold and flu germs may be lurking. + Protect your family from the weeks of misery that a cold or flu can bring, with our 10 tips for prevention.
5 surprising surfaces where cold & flu germs may be lurking
- Shopping Carts: Did you know? The handles of almost two-thirds of shopping carts tested in a 2007 University of Arizona study were contaminated with fecal bacteria? The cart handles contained more of these bacteria than the average public restroom. While many stores now provide disinfectant wipes, Its's wise to bring along your own. I keep a few at-the-ready in a zip top bag, in my purse. And please, bring the wipe to the cart. I've seen far too many people bring the cart to the area where the wipes are. What's the point, at that point? You've already grasped the germ loaded handle.
- Cell phones: Did you know? Cell phones often carry more bacteria than a toilet seat. Wipe your cell phone down frequently with a disinfectant wipe, especially during cold and flu season.
- Public common areas: There's obvious places where germs lurk in public places, such as public restrooms. But what about the table, chairs, and highchairs at your favorite restaurants/eateries? They are often laden with germs. The quick wipe-down that most restaurants do, prior to seating new guests, often isn't enough to rid the area of cold/flu causing germs. Bring along your own disinfectant wipes in a zip top bag, and give the table, chairs, booth, high chair, booster seat etc. a good once over (before sitting down with your family). Be sure to pay extra attention to the underside of the edges of the table (where you may not be apt to place your hands - but small children may grasp frequently throughout a meal)
- Restaurant Menus: The surfaces of menus, like any hard surface, can harbor cold/flu germs for up to 48 hours.
- Lemon wedges: Did you know? Nearly 70 % of lemon wedges placed on the side of water glasses contain disease causing microbes. WHAT? This was a shocker for me! When dining out, just say no to the lemon wedge, folks. Gross.
10 tips for preventing cold and flu
- Wash your hands—help prevent the spread of cold germs and the flu virus by consistently washing your hands throughout the day. For those occasions where you are unable to wash your hands, use hand santizer.
- Cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing—Instead of sneezing into your hands, try sneezing into a tissue (if available) or into the fold of your elbow.
- Avoid frequently touching nose, eyes & mouth—Even with frequent hand washing, your hands are still covered in germs, so keep them away from the most common germ entrances.
- Keep surfaces and objects used daily clean—The flu virus can live and be transferred from person to person, on a variety of surfaces. Regularly wipe down desks, phones, tablets, doorknobs, counters, light switches, with disinfectant wipes or sprays,
- Eat right—Help your body fight off flu viruses with a well balanced diet filled with fresh fruits, vegetables and Vitamin-C rich foods.
- Stay active—Whether you take a quick walk or go to the gym, any type of cardio exercise will help to activate your body’s infection-fighting defenses and stimulate your immune system.
- Sleep—Let your body recover daily, and fight off any germs that you may have picked up, by getting plenty of sleep.
- Stay hydrated—Drinking fluids, especially water, is a great way to flush out any toxins and germs.
- Manage stress—Stress can affect your immune system, reducing your ability to fight off the flu virus or other germs. Find ways to keep your stress low and manageable all of the time really, but especially during cold and flu season.
- Get vaccinated—One of the most effective ways to protect yourself from the flu is to get vaccinated - but also know, that the flu shot doesn't protect you from all strains of flu.
During cold and flu season I stock up on essentials for our household, at Sam's Club. I always make sure to have plenty of Lysol Disinfectant Spray and Lysol Professional Disinfecting Wipes, on-hand this time of year. Lysol kills 99.9% of germs, bacteria, and viruses. It's my #1 defense during cold & flu season!
While I like to kill germs with Lysol before they become an issue, without fail, we never manage to escape the season unscathed. For times when we do get sick,I like to make sure that I have all of the tools to help everyone feel better quickly, stocked in our medicine cabinet. I can always relieve symptoms and cough with Mucinex and Delsym. Sam's Club makes stocking up on those items convenient too. They always have great deals on Delsym Adult Liquid Cough Suppressant, Mucinex Expectorant - Maximum Strength, Mucinex DM Expectorant & Cough Suppressant, and Mucinex Maximum Strength.
No matter what the Cold & Flu season throws my way, I'm prepared for it, either way!
Be prepared this cold & flu season; stock up at your local Sam's Club. Super Busy? I know! What mom isn't? If you're a member, you can also grab all of the supplies that you need to combat cold & flu season, at SamsClub.com.