Stifle the Sniffles

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cold preventionVERMONT - It's that time of year once again. The time for sniffles, sneezes, and coughing - everything having to do with the common cold. While there are some people who think it is inevitable to contract the cold, there are some ways to lessen your chances, or even prevent getting the virus.

The Vermont Department of Health has listed a variety of ways to help you stay away from that nasty cold.

The most important thing to do is to wash your hands as much as you can, and the best you can. Warm water and soap for 20 seconds usually does the trick, but so do alcohol-based hand sanitizers like Purell. Some people have been skeptical of the use of hand sanitizer and if it actually works.

The answer to your questions; it does help. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Vermont Health both say that using these products will help eliminate germs.

Other things that can be done to prevent yourself or other people from getting the cold is to cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing, as well as disinfecting heavily used areas, and to keep your hands away from your eyes, noes, and mouth.

Kids can be more susceptible to the virus this time of year, and daycares such as Lyndon Children's Center does things to prevent their kids from getting colds. "We do lots of hand-washing with anti-bacterial soap. I can't even tell you how many times a day we wash hands," Stacy Tanner, part of the Children Center said. "At the end of the day, pretty much the whole place gets disinfected everyday," Tanner said.

But prevention for children goes further than just at the daycare itself. "We send home different fliers that we get from the health department just to give suggestions. The other thing is to send kids home, or encourage doctor visits, if kids are sick," said Tanner.

There are many ways to prevent yourself and others from getting the common cold. So keep those mouths covered, and those hands washed often to do your part, and keep yourself healthy for this cold-contracting winter season.