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Boxer
06-30-2005, 08:44 AM
My 1 year old niece lives with me and I once read that babies / children get 20 colds a year on average or some crazy number like that.

The problem is that every time the baby has a cold or something ( which is regular ) I am catching it too.

Other family members seem to be suffering just the same so I don't think my immune system is faulty or anything.

I've been thinking that the soap I use to wash my hands could be partly responsible for this. I don't know how many times I wash my hands in a day but it will be 10+.

The soap I use is a "cleansing cream bar" so i'm thinking it might not be effective enough at killing bacteria.

The actual bar I use is this one h ttp://www.academyhealth.co.uk/ishop/934/shopscr1097.html

What do others think please? Should I start using an alternative soap?

elissalowe
06-30-2005, 10:50 AM
My 1 year old niece lives with me and I once read that babies / children get 20 colds a year on average or some crazy number like that.

The problem is that every time the baby has a cold or something ( which is regular ) I am catching it too.

Other family members seem to be suffering just the same so I don't think my immune system is faulty or anything.

I've been thinking that the soap I use to wash my hands could be partly responsible for this. I don't know how many times I wash my hands in a day but it will be 10+.

The soap I use is a "cleansing cream bar" so i'm thinking it might not be effective enough at killing bacteria.

The actual bar I use is this one h ttp://www.academyhealth.co.uk/ishop/934/shopscr1097.html

What do others think please? Should I start using an alternative soap?
Colds aren't caused by bacteria, so switching to an antibacterial soap will be useless. But I would lose the bar soap - bars can easily become contaminated. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=6394740&query_hl=14). Use a liquid soap instead. Augmenting your soap-and-water hand washing with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer will also help reduce hand contamination (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=12032498&dopt=Abstract and http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=15805355&query_hl=19).

More importantly, start training yourself to keep your hands away from your face. Most people will rub their noses or place their hands in their mouths quite unconsciously - which is a great way to inoculate yourself - and not just with colds either...enteric viruses such as rotavirus can also be spread this way.

Boxer
06-30-2005, 12:55 PM
Colds aren't caused by bacteria, so switching to an antibacterial soap will be useless. But I would lose the bar soap - bars can easily become contaminated. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=6394740&query_hl=14)
Wow :eek: That one came as a shock. I didn't expect that I could be possibly getting infected from the soap bar itself.

I will be honest that I rub my eyes a lot and put my fingers in my mouth unconsciously sometimes. Any ideas how I can stop doing this? Will just stopping myself from doing it when I realise that I am doing it help?

Thank you for your help Elissa! :)

elissalowe
06-30-2005, 01:27 PM
Wow :eek: That one came as a shock. I didn't expect that I could be possibly getting infected from the soap bar itself.

I will be honest that I rub my eyes a lot and put my fingers in my mouth unconsciously sometimes. Any ideas how I can stop doing this? Will just stopping myself from doing it when I realise that I am doing it help?

Thank you for your help Elissa! :)
LOL - I've had pretty extensive training in microbiology, virology, and epidemiology - which included the safe handling of biological/chemical hazards and laboratory isotopes - so I've had the "watch where you put your hands" routine drummed into my skull! Having to wear protective clothing and gloves, working in a negative pressure environment, and using equipment designed to contain hazardous materials (such as laminar-flow hoods and fume hoods) does a lot to raise your awareness!

Most people, however, don't have that "luxury" (for lack of a better term). Keeping it in the forefront of your mind and trying to stop yourself when you do it is helpful - but it isn't always easy to keep your mind on it. To stay focused on it you could try wearing a pair of gloves around the house for a few days. Doesn't matter what kind - although latex gloves would probably work best...they're not thick enough to interfere with little tasks, like picking up coins or turning the pages of a book. But when you put your hands near your face, it will feel (and taste) differently - which will alert you to what you're doing.

Boxer
06-30-2005, 01:36 PM
Great idea! Thanks again for your help Elissa :)

alwaysimprove
06-30-2005, 03:06 PM
Wow :eek: That one came as a shock. I didn't expect that I could be possibly getting infected from the soap bar itself.

I will be honest that I rub my eyes a lot and put my fingers in my mouth unconsciously sometimes. Any ideas how I can stop doing this? Will just stopping myself from doing it when I realise that I am doing it help?

Thank you for your help Elissa! :)

May I suggest going to a vet and getting one of those collars that stops dogs from licking themselves? :D

Boxer
06-30-2005, 04:05 PM
Lol