The back-to-school season brings a predictable influx of germs as children head back to the classroom and start spreading cold and flu bugs around. Avoid unwelcome sick days and help your family stay healthy with these tips for a germ-free Opelika, Alabama, home.
Sing 'Happy Birthday'
The "Happy Birthday" song can become a surprising weapon against those back-to-school germs. Teach your children to sing the full song while they’re soaping up and washing their hands. This will help ensure that they’re washing for the proper length of time and really working up enough lather for the soap to do its job. If your kids aren’t the singing type, you can also purchase a hand-washing timer to keep beside the sink. Options range from traditional hourglasses to electronic timers with built-in settings for hand-washing and tooth brushing.
Light up Those Germs
Germs and bacteria are invisible threats that can pervade your home. As your HVAC system and ductwork circulate air throughout the house, they may be circulating these unhealthy hazards as well. Stop unhealthy organisms in their tracks with an ultraviolet germicidal UV light. These lights kill the mold and bacteria that like to live in the coils of your HVAC system. Talk to our technicians about adding this indoor air quality solution to your home.
Manage Humidity Carefully
Cold air holds less moisture than warm air, which is why dry skin, eyes, and sinuses are such a common problem in autumn and fall. The changing weather coincides with the back-to-school season. Your sinuses need moisture and mucus to trap the germs and organisms in the air. Dry, cracked sinuses let germs in more easily.
Unfortunately, there are issues with excessive humidity as well. Most fungi require humidity levels over 60 percent, and dust mites are minimized at humidity levels below 50 percent. Studies have shown that incidences of respiratory infections are lowest in environments with mid-range humidity levels between 40 and 70 percent rather than those that are excessively high or low. Installing both a humidifier and a dehumidifier in your home can help you keep humidity levels in a healthy range.
Tweak Your Diet
It’s no surprise that a diet high in vitamin-packed fruits and vegetables is the best way to support a healthy immune system. However, you might not know that some vegetables are more effective than others at keeping kids healthy. Vitamin C increases the body’s production of white blood cells to help you fight off cold and flu bugs. Give your kids plenty of citrus fruits like oranges and tangerines to help build their immune systems. Vegetables are also a great source of vitamin C. Red bell peppers pack a punch twice as powerful as those citrus fruits.
Other healthy picks when you’re sick include spinach, broccoli, garlic, and ginger. Sneak these into soups or pastas to help kids stay healthy despite all the back-to-school bugs.
Keep Things Clean
Keeping your home clean will help you keep germs and bacteria at bay. Make sure your cleaning routine addresses all the basics. Dusting and vacuuming regularly will help minimize irritants and allergens like pollen and dust. Wiping down door knobs and eating surfaces with an antibacterial cleaner will kill troublesome germs.
Don’t forget to clean your air too. Have your HVAC system tuned up seasonally. You should schedule a maintenance visit in early spring for your air conditioner and early fall for your heating system. During your maintenance visit, our technicians will thoroughly clean the unit, getting rid of dust, dirt, and bacteria. You can keep your system in shape between visits by changing your air filter every one to three months.
Your home’s HVAC system can go a long way toward keeping spaces clean and healthy. Whether you’re looking for indoor air quality solutions or you’re overdue for a regular inspection and maintenance service, Sensigreen can help. Give us a call at (334) 366-9237 to learn more about how your heating and cooling system can battle germs and help to keep your home healthy.
Image provided by Shutterstock