Favorite Products to Prevent Spread of Colds and Flu

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Products Nannies Love

Kids spread germs. Fingers and toys constantly go in their mouths and proper hygiene practices are difficult for little ones to follow.

Washing their hands, teaching children to cover their mouths with their arm when they cough, not allowing them to share foods and drinks, and disinfecting high traffic areas (such as door knobs) are essential ways to help prevent the spread of colds and viruses. Beyond that, nannies can mitigate the spread of colds and the flu by stocking the house with tissues and making sure everyone gets the flu shot.

Here are some of my favorite products to help prevent the spread of germs:

Washing Hands

Make it a habit that immediately when arriving home to wash you hands. Antibacterial soaps are not needed. I love Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap Kit because it is a gentle soap that doesn’t dry out hands and the no touch soap dispenser. Show kids how to create a lather and then scrub in between fingers, under fingernails, and on both sides of their hands for at least 20 seconds. A good rule of thumb is to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice before rinsing and drying.

Hand Sanitizer

Sinks and soap aren’t available everywhere we need them to be to wash our hands. That’s when sanitizing gels come in handy. I like Babyganic Hand Sanitizer because it is fragrance free and gentle so it doesn’t dry out little kids’ hands.

Alcohol Pads

When a child is sick be prepared to wipe down everything. Wipe all toys that go in a baby’s or toddler’s mouth. Wipe down door knobs, counters, tables, faucets, handles, railings, and anything the kids come in contact with. I love Alcohol Pads because they come in small portable packages and kill all the germs. You can use them on palms of the hands of children when a sink and soap aren’t available as well. Of course you can use Clorox Disinfecting Wipes or Lysol Disinfecting Wipes to disinfect surfaces as well (but never use Clorox or Lysol Wipes to clean hands).

Boogie Wipes

When you have a cold virus, your body defends itself by making lots of snot, it’s your body’s way of trying to flush the virus out. I used to use baby wipes to clean nose of my nanny kids but the ingredients irritate the skin in their faces. Boogie Wipes are safe for children because they are simply made of saline.

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Vinegar Spray for School Gear

It is estimated that 70 to 80 percent of daycares have influenza during cold and flu season. Wipe down student’s gear at the end of each day, using a spray bottle filled with a 50/50 water and Vinegar solution.  Just a few sprays and a scrub with a clean cloth will naturally disinfect and deodorize. I launder backpacks and lunch boxes once weekly. Many lunch bags and back packs are machine-washable. If not, hand wash in a sink with a mild detergent and dry overnight in a dish strainer. Launder sleeping bags or nap pads weekly as well.

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Kitchen Sponge

Germs and viruses love the kitchens sponge and most of us forget about keeping it clean as well.  Throw the sponge into the dishwasher daily with a heated dry setting.

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