The phrase “frequent hand washing” probably sounds like a bad tune that stays trapped in your head. The truth is, soap and water really are the best defense against illness and germs. But cold-water hand washing? Not so much. Most kids favor cold water, which is not nearly as good as warm water. More than 30,000 germs per square inch typically chill out on the cold-water faucet versus 18,000 germs per square inch on the hot-water faucet. This is one of the primary places where germs, like those from cold and flu virses, collect.
What to do: Regular soap is plenty effective, but for kids whose hand-washing skills are still shaky, anti-bacterial soaps are the way to go.