Cold Home > Common Cold Prevention

Some of the most common ways of preventing a cold include washing your hands often, avoiding people who have the common cold, using disinfectants, and living a healthy lifestyle. Other common cold prevention methods that might not initially come to mind include keeping your hands away from your face and reducing or managing stress. Research has also shown that the more social you are, the less likely you are to get sick.

Prevention of the Common Cold: An Overview

There are several ways you can reduce your chances of getting a cold. Suggestions for preventing the common cold include:
 
  • Washing your hands regularly
  • Keeping your hands away from your nose, mouth, and eyes
  • Using disinfectants
  • Limiting exposure to infected people
  • Practicing healthy habits.
     

Wash Those Hands to Prevent a Cold

The common cold can be passed through coughing, sneezing, and touching surfaces such as doorknobs and telephones. Handwashing with soap and water is the simplest and one of the most effective ways to keep from getting colds or from giving them to others. During cold season, you should wash your hands often and teach your children to do the same.
 
According to the American Society for Microbiology, a national survey found that Americans were most likely to say they wash their hands after changing a diaper and before handling food. Most, however, said they don't wash their hands after coughing and sneezing.
 
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) recommends regular scrubbing of your hands with warm, soapy water for about 15 seconds as a part of common cold prevention. When water isn't available, the CDC recommends using alcohol-based products made for sanitizing hands.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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