Set up a Sick Room!

Well, it is here … the seasonal flu, stomach bug, allergies etc are in full force!  Just this week I have heard about several people being “down for the count” with some type of virus or bug.  It is hard to avoid if you have kids in school or work in the public, but there are a few things to help keep your home as germ-free as possible.

Limiting contact with others by setting up a sick room is an easy way to stop germ spreading, according to Gina Peek, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension housing and consumer specialist.

Start by stocking the room with tissues, alcohol-based hand rub, a thermometer and humidifier. Line the trash can with a plastic bag and make sure it has a tightly fitting lid. Store any medicines in the room out of the reach of children.

Beyond those basics, you also could keep a cooler or pitcher with ice and drinks in the room, along with a cup with a straw or a squeeze bottle to make drinking liquids easily accessible.

Designate a single caregiver to keep visitors to a minimum.  This is where my family went wrong, since I took one day off work and he took the second.  Thus, making both of us a primary caregiver for our daughter.

Hard surfaces, linens, dishes and laundry in the sick room should be freshened on a daily basis. Go over surfaces such as doorknobs, bedside tables and bathroom sinks and counters with water and dish soap or common household cleaners that kill germs.

If there is more than one bathroom in the house, consider having the sick person use one while the rest of the household uses the other one.  Either way, it’s a good idea to put aside a separate set of towels for the sick person.

Beyond setting up a sick room, take general precautions, too, such as frequently washing your hands with soap; avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth; and follow healthy habits like getting plenty of sleep and exercising.

I am afraid several more months this information will be needed.  Stopping the spread of germs is your best defense.



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