t’s easy to take your health for granted. For the millions of Canadians who will get the flu or a cold this winter, the sentiment becomes all too evident. For most it will be an uncomfortable inconvenience; for others it can be fatal.

The good news is these illnesses are largely preventable. With a few easy steps you can protect yourself and your community this cold and flu season. Ensure your vaccinations are up to date, wash your hands regularly, and sanitize hard surfaces with disinfectant spray or wipes like Clorox wipes, which kill 99.9 percent of viruses, including some of the nastiest ones — E. coli, salmonella, and those found in hospitals.

Viruses love complacency

When illnesses such as the flu or norovirus sweep through schools, daycares, retirement homes, and other public places, we are vigilant about making sure the environment is clean — but when they pass, we become complacent.

Employers owe it to their teams to consistently make sure that work spaces are disinfected, especially around the peak of cold and flu season — it will keep employees healthy, and is beneficial for the bottom line. For more than a century, Clorox has been providing innovative solutions that are simple and safe for consumers. “With our wipes, people can wipe and walk away feeling confident that surfaces are clean,” says Barley Chironda, a nurse by background, and now the National Healthcare Sales Director and Infection Control Specialist at Clorox Canada. “We need to encourage a culture where people can ask for these types of disinfectant products to protect their workspaces.”

And, it’s not just the office that deserves extra attention — anywhere people come into close contact with one another is a potential site for infection, like daycares for example. “I am always pleased when I see my children’s daycare use Clorox wipes, because I know they work and will reduce illness,” Chironda expresses.

Cold weather is the perfect storm for germs

As winter approaches we tend to stay indoors more, and living closer together makes it easier for bugs to spread. Viruses and respiratory bugs thrive in these colder environments, which is why we often get sick in the winter months. We unknowingly encourage their spread by not disinfecting surfaces, and as a result get ourselves and those around us sick. Think any hard surface — fridge doors, countertops, toys, your desk and keyboard at work, door knobs, public transit — they’re all crawling with germs. Worse yet, viruses can stick around for days waiting to invade your body where they’ll go to work disrupting your immune system and making you miserable.

So, wipe away those bugs, and stay healthy this season.