It’s that time of year when the air gets cooler, pumpkin spice lattes are filling up our cups, and the kids are settling into their back-to-school routines. All is well – until that first cold comes home. The sneezing, sniffling, coughing – and inevitably crying – that ensues makes you wonder why you even love the fall season in the first place. Unfortunately, there’s no avoiding the cold season as the air gets cooler and drier. A natural part of daily life for anyone with young children or kids in school, cold season can throw everyone off when it hits. Before you fret, there are a few ways to prepare for the cold and flu season. While there’s no real cure or magic potion, we hope you’ll find a bit of peace this winter with these helpful tips including immune-boosting foods, DIY home remedies, natural cleaning solutions, and more.
DISCLAIMER: THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE
The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images, and other material contained on this website is for informational purposes only. No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.
There’s really no way to keep the surfaces in our homes hands-free. From doorknobs to light switches, floors, and doors, chances are there’s a germ or two lingering in a well-lived space. Get your hands on some helpful and simple cleaning routines this fall and winter season to help keep the bad guy germs at bay. By having a few disinfectant practices in place that make it easy (and maybe even fun?) for the whole family, everyone will benefit. Less colds and germs = more time for favorite fall activities and family fun. Healthy kids are happy kids and happy kids mean less stress for parents – a winter win-win for everyone.
Hand Hygiene for Littles
Teaching kids proper hand hygiene is the first line of defense against germs. Make hand washing fun by using colorful soap and singing songs together. Remind them to scrub for at least 20 seconds, and don't forget to dry thoroughly using UNpaper® Towels.
Cleaning and disinfecting seems simple enough, but there are products out there that can help save a little elbow grease. Invest in quality cleaning products that are effective against germs and choose disinfectants that are proven to kill common viruses and bacteria. Pay extra attention to high-touch surfaces like doorknobs, light switches, and remote controls. A few natural cleaning agents include apple cider vinegar; essential oils such as clove, eucalyptus, or tea tree; aloe vera, and vitamin E oil. If you want to ditch single use plastic cleaning bottles, our 16oz spray bottles & covers are the perfect solution. Isopropyl alcohol (or rubbing alcohol) can be used in combination with the above, along with a Marley's Monsters washable sponge, to help disinfect thoroughly.
Versatile Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar (or ACV) can be used to boost immune systems (see below) and holds antibacterial properties making it an ideal choice for a natural and potentially waste-free all-purpose cleaner. Mix equal parts water and ACV in a spray bottle or glass container to use to help clean drains, counters, stovetops, and more.
Pro tip: Add a few drops of germ-fighting essential oils if you can’t stomach the smell!
Essentials To Keep On Hand
No one gets excited about taking that panic-driven trip to the pharmacy or store once it's full-fledged flu season – especially since avoiding it can also mean staying away from even more unnecessary germs or viruses. Having a few tried and true essentials on hand will give you and your family some peace of mind while also helping to prevent unwelcome unwellness.
Natural Minded Remedies
Honey, which contains antioxidant, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties, is a great essential you may have already on hand to help alleviate cold symptoms and give your immune systems a boost. Added to warm liquids like tea, it can help relieve a sore throat. Ginger, a naturally grown root vegetable, is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and can help settle an upset stomach or relieve nausea. Steep fresh ginger slices in hot water to make a soothing ginger tea. A potent natural antibiotic, garlic can help fight off infections. Load up garlic in some of your recipes for an added boost.
Please note — honey should never be given to children under one year of age. Remember that while these natural remedies may provide relief from cold and flu symptoms, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice and treatment. If your symptoms worsen or persist, or if you have underlying health conditions, it's essential to consult with a healthcare provider for proper guidance and care.
Fight off cold season while reducing single-use tissues with our 100% cotton single-ply flannel UNtissues. These reusable cotton UNtissues are soft on the nose and face and are a perfect eco-friendly solution for runny noses. Available in playful colors such as rainbow or earthly rainbow, or classic black and white, UNtissues make an excellent essential for each member of the family to keep on hand.
Staying hydrated doesn’t have to feel like a chore. Make the most of it and add a bit of fun for the family with our colorful 24oz glass tumbler sets, fresh-cut fruit such as strawberries, lemon, or orange, and give kids their very own designated hydration station to encourage them to keep up their water intake and stay healthy this cold season.
Give Your Natural Immune System A Boost
As our first line of defense, our immune systems need a little strength and support when working overtime. Pack some power into daily meals, clean up your “sleep hygiene” or bedtime routines, or add meaningful movement to your life to stay healthy this cold and flu season.
Fun Foods For Fighting The Flu
Nutrient-rich options and vitamin C-packed fruits and veggies include cantaloupe, guavas, bell peppers, kiwi, strawberries, oranges, papaya, broccoli, tomatoes, kale, and snow peas. Try out a veggie or fruit skewer in different themes for a kid-friendly lunch idea, or add yogurt for probiotics.
Limiting screen time before bed, adding a sound machine or evening walk, and brushing our teeth are all examples of sleep hygiene. Consider limiting stimulation before bedtime for kids and create a helpful routine for everyone to promote adequate rest – one of the best ways to give your immune system a much-needed boost.
Navigate The Season With Confidence
While cold and flu season may be inevitable, it doesn't have to be a dreaded time of year. By taking proactive steps such as maintaining excellent hand hygiene, stocking up on essential supplies, and boosting immunity through healthy habits, you can navigate the season with confidence. Remember, preparation is key, and a little extra care can go a long way in keeping you and your family healthy and happy during the chilly months ahead.