Editorial: Wash your hands

There is one thing that more than anything else will keep you healthier this winter: washing your hands.

This is the season we see lots of absences from work and school. We are trapped inside with the windows closed, with dry heat, and we are in closer proximity to one another than we would be at other times of the year.

A wise pediatrician used to tell the parents of children suffering from a cold, “Take them outside!” The cold air causes their nose to run and relieves the stuffiness that makes a cold so uncomfortable.

But when we must be inside and that nose is running, or worse, if you are suffering from the flu this season, there are common-sense precautions to take for everyone’s benefit.

Wash your hands.

Avoid touching your face and mouth. If you do, then wash your hands.

Cough and sneeze into your elbow or sleeve. And then wash your hands anyway.

Do not share drinks, food, phones, keyboards, pens and pencils, or other items that are touched a lot. When you must, wash your hands.

If you are sick, stay home, away from other people. And wash your hands while you are there — after using the bathroom, before making meals, before eating, and before and after touching the TV remote or the phone. Make sure everyone in the house does so as well.

Oh, and don’t forget — wash your hands.