Five simple steps to prevent the spread of cold and flu germs

(BPT) – A whopping 38 million school days are missed each year due to the flu, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To help keep children in the classroom and focused on learning, Ali Larter, mother of two and star of Fox’s new hit show “Pitch,” is on a mission to teach parents and children how simple healthy habits can help stop the spread of germs during the back to school season – and beyond.

Step 1: Wash hands

Washing hands frequently is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of germs. Make sure you and your children use warm water and an adequate amount of soap to get bubbles over the entire hand, including between the fingers. ‘To kill germs,’ says Larter, ‘I have my children make their own dance routine or sing the Happy Birthday song twice to ensure they are washing for at least 20 seconds.’

Step 2: Use disinfecting wipes

To Larter, her son’s backpack is a ‘germ feast.’ She reveals, ‘the first thing he does when he gets home is toss his backpack on the countertop, leading me to regularly disinfect with Lysol Disinfecting Wipes and Lysol Disinfectant Spray to kill 99.9 percent of germs on commonly touched surfaces.’ By frequently disinfecting surfaces such as faucets, tables and door handles around the home, you’ll help reduce the amount of outside bacteria and viruses from coming into your household.

Step 3: Get enough sleep

Getting children to bed can sometimes be a struggle, but school-aged children need at least 10 hours of sleep every day, according to CDC. Says Larter, ‘Create a routine with your children so they look forward to bedtime.’ For example, try dinner, bath, books, and then bed to ensure children are getting an adequate amount of sleep for the coming day.

Step 4: Cover that cough

When you need to cough or sneeze, explain to children the importance of covering their mouth with a tissue or using the crook of their elbow. This helps reduce the amount of microscopic droplets that float in the air and spread germs. If a sneeze does manage to escape before covering up, Larter says, ‘Encourage children to wash their hands immediately while parents disinfect nearby surfaces to kill lingering germs.’

Step 5: Stay home when sick

Sometimes you and your kids will follow all the rules, but still catch a bug. ‘While we may not want our children to miss out on learning, to stop the spread of illness from classmate to classmate, make sure you keep your children home when they are feeling under the weather,’ Larter advises. Not only will this allow them time to rest so they can recoup faster, it will also help ensure others don’t get sick in the classroom.

Bonus step: Lysol has partnered with Box Tops for Education as the exclusive household cleaning brand to help support schools one clean surface at a time by providing disinfecting products like Lysol Disinfecting Wipes and Lysol Disinfectant Spray which are now eligible for Box Tops redemption. Support your school by purchasing Box Top products – each Box Tops Clip is worth 10 cents and schools can earn up to $ 20,000 every year. Learn more at

Brandpoint – Free Online Content


* In this video, we explain how to prevent the flu and common cold from spreading.

For tips on preventing the spread of the flu and cold, visit

This video is intended for US residents only. Copyright © 2016 GSK. All rights reserved.

Preventing the Spread of the Flu and Common Cold Preventing the Spread of the Flu and Common Cold

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