Simple Things still count - staying well for Christmas

14 December 2023 3 min read

People across Sefton and Merseyside are being urged to remember the Simple Things to avoid getting ill in the lead up to Christmas.

Simple things, like washing your hands regularly and thoroughly and sanitising surfaces, can help you avoid the bacteria that can cause winter illnesses such as Norovirus.

Thousands of bacteria on everyday objects

As part of a recent research project, scientists analysed swabs from a range of everyday objects such as escalator handrails, public toilet door handles, self-service screens as well as office computer keyboards, pets and pet toys. They found thousands of bacteria, including E. coli, on almost all objects investigated.

These illnesses would ruin Christmas and can cause serious illness for older people and children, but the Simple Things - regular hand washing and cleaning of those surfaces, including those within our homes and at work - can help stop them spreading.

Advice on a range of subject such as the importance of washing you hands and how often and how long to do it and sanitising surfaces  can be found by visiting and scrolling down the page.

Surrounded all day every day

Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health said: “We are all surrounded by bacteria and microbes all day every day, and we come into contact with them on every surface we touch.

“Remembering to wash our hands, particularly after visiting the toilet and avoiding touching our mouths can help prevent the transfer of those bacteria and microbes into our own or other people’s system where they can cause illness.

“And the regular cleaning  and sanitising those often-touched surfaces in public places and spaces also helps a great deal.”

Lots of fluids

Vomiting and diarrhoea can usually be treated at home. The most important thing is to have lots of fluids to avoid dehydration. It is also important to stay at home so that you don’t spread it.

You can use this link to find NHS advice on vomiting and diarrhoea.

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