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jabag11's avatar

What should I be aware of with sick people in the house?

Asked by jabag11 (670 points ) February 2nd, 2011

My brother and dad are both sick and I am now just getting better, I’ll probably be 100% better by today, I was sick for six days. Yet, my brother and dad are still sick! Me and my brother don’t touch really lol, but we use the same soap, bathroom, and yea. Now me and my dad only do the cheeck to cheeck kiss thing when I say hi to him. We all use the same dishes but of course wash them before using.

So please, tell me, is there anything I should watch out for or should do to make sure I don’t catch a cold again from them!? I am willing to sleep outside for a freakin’ week to not get sick, I really really despise getting sick, it held me back so much. So please help a brother out. Thank you =D

P.S. My brother and dad only have colds, nothing more serious.

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11 Answers

SmashTheState's avatar

The vast majority of illness is caused by simple lack of hand-washing. Doctors are taught to wash their hands for 15 seconds. Any less than that and you are not guaranteed to remove all the germs. (Incidentally, if you want to horrify and disgust yourself, go to a hospital and time how long doctors and nurses actually wash their hands. Studies have repeatedly shown that the lack of proper handwashing by medical professionals is responsible for huge numbers of deaths every year in hospitals.)

Wash your hands at every opportunity and you’ll minimize your exposure. (If you just got over the same illness they have, I wouldn’t worry too much, anyway, since your immune system has just acquired temporary resistance; that’s how you got over it.)

boxer3's avatar

@SmashTheState is spot on :] I was just about to type constantly wash your hands.
You could also get some vitamin c in you- either in pill form , orange form etc!

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Don’t touch anything in the house and then touch your eyes or mouth without washing your hands. Doorknobs are some of the germiest things.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@jabag11 You cannot get re-infected with the same “bugs” that your family has. Your system has built up immunity, but as others have said wash your hands.

gailcalled's avatar

Make sure that everyone else in the house also wash his hands constantly. And have them dispose of soiled tissue in plastic bags, and cover their mouths and noses when sneezing or coughing. If you like, get a second bar of soap for you exclusively.

Skip the kiss for now.

firesale's avatar

Seconding Smash. Girlfriend’s a doctor and, while I don’t know about her coworkers, she’s positively manic about the importance of hand washing.

Really unlikely you’ll get the same bug again, but definitely open the windows some to air out the house and be sure to use disinfectant wipes.

Kardamom's avatar

If you guys are using bar soap, consider switching to liquid soap with a pump. Use anti-bacterial hand wipes on the faucets before you touch them, also use them on doorknobs and TV remote control, telephone and refrigerator and pantry handles. Make sure your counters get wiped down before (and after) you fix a meal. If dad and brother are coughing and sneezing, tell them to do so into a disposable tissue. Stay out of the rooms where they are coughing and sneezing. If you touch them, don’t touch your mouth, nose, eyes or ears after touching them. Wash your hands right away if you have to touch them. You might have to stop kissing dad on the cheek until he is better (wave at him from across the room).

Not sure why people keep saying you can’t get re-infected by the same germs. Some people (especially in my family) have lowered immune systems due to certain conditions that they have. They tend to get sick over and over, while I rarely get sick. I also follow my own above advice, whereas most people don’t (about keeping things clean while there’s an outbreak of illness).

RocketGuy's avatar

Definitely beware of touching stuff @Kardamom listed.

JLeslie's avatar

If they are sick with the same thing you had, and it was a virus, you don’t have to worry, you already had it. If it is someting different then try to stay away from them, wash your hands if you help them, and try not to touch your face. Usually illness is most contagious in the first 48 hours of being sick (and hours before, when the person is not yet aware they are getting sick) so if it has been a few days now, you are probably in the clear.

YARNLADY's avatar

Use a lot of disinfectant wipes. In my family, the sick ones use disposable plates and tableware.

stratman37's avatar

Go MJ on ‘em and wear the I-didn’t-have-time-to-put-on-my-prosthetic-nose-today-mask. It works just as well on viruses as it does on the paparazzi.

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