How to keep your family well in winter

Now the weather has turned much colder there are germs and bugs all over the place and babies are very susceptible to catching colds which they can then pass on to you and all the other members of your family.

Following these tips can help avoid some of the colds out there. Look out for my next blog about what to do when your baby does catch a cold.

Wash your hands often yours and your little ones
It is very easy to remember to wash your own hands after a nappy change but be sure to wash your babys hands too. Their hands end up in their mouths a lot so it is very important to try and keep them as clean as possible. Remember to wash all their teething toys and dummies too.
Wash hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water and dry well with a clean towel. Make sure to always wash hands before and after eating, handling food or feeding your baby/child and after using the toilet, changing nappies or helping your child use the toilet. In the absence of running water and soap, use an alcohol-based hand gel, but make sure you put enough on so it takes at least 30 seconds to dry.

Clean disinfect frequently touched surfaces

Use an antibacterial surface spray (or handy wipes) on a daily basis to clean surfaces and kill germs. Its also a good idea to clean doorknobs, handles and switches.

Sterilise all baby feeding equipment

Babies have fragile immune systems, especially in the first year of their lives, which means that they are more susceptible to catching germs. Washing only removes some of the germs whereas sterilising kills them, including fungi, bacteria and viruses. There are 2 ways to sterilise: 1/ steam (using an electric steriliser or in the microwave). 2/the Milton Cold Water Method - which is using cold tap water and either sterilising tablets or sterilising fluid. Click here for a step-by-step video guide on how to sterilise.

The mixture of milk (whether from the breast or formula) with babys saliva creates an ideal breeding ground for bacteria, so even if you breastfeed its a good idea to sterilise breast-pump parts and nipple shields too.

Travel smart
Wash your hands or use an antibacterial hand gel before and after using public transport. Even when travelling in your car (youd be surprised the number of germs on a forecourt petrol pump!)
If your baby does catch a cold dont panic. It is bound to happen to everyone.
Look out for my next blog about top tips for looking after your baby when they have a cold.

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