National Survey Unveils How Moms Survive a Sick Day

Survey finds American moms use tea and humidifiers as natural remedies first; "Love Actually" beats out "Dirty Dancing" as mom's favorite sick day movie

When your spouse is sick, do you quarantine the bedroom and avoid contact? If yes, you're not alone – 43 percent of American moms say that they avoid hugging and kissing altogether and 10 percent report that they sleep on the couch when a spouse is sick. These findings come from a new survey, underwritten by the makers of Vicks branded Humidifiers, which asked moms how they treat – and beat – a cold. The survey also indicates that when it comes to treating a cold the top five natural remedies moms use are tea, orange juice, chicken soup, lots of water, and humidifiers. Portable humidifiers, in addition to loosening congestion and soothing coughs, have been found in recent studies to reduce the survival of flu viruses on surfaces and in the air when maintaining an indoor humidity level between 40-60 percent.


For moms always on-the-go, relaxation or "me time" was a common trend uncovered in the survey. According to moms, classic movies and a good book are top activities to get through a cold or the flu. Moms ranked movies like "Love Actually," "Dirty Dancing" and "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" as their top three choices to watch when sick. Keeping their kids healthy is also a top priority for moms. The number one thing mothers report doing to prep kids for cold and flu season is explaining how to properly wash hands. Furthermore, results indicate that more education is needed in using a humidifier in a child's room, especially considering the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using one to relieve coughs and congestion.


The moms were also surveyed on the validity of common cold and flu season advice; the results of which were:


    * 85 percent of moms thought that you lose the most body heat from the head, which is false. In truth, you do not lose more body heat through your head but it may feel that way because your face is more sensitive to temperature than other areas.

    * 72 percent of moms thought that they should rest, not exercise, when ill, which is false. In fact, you do need to rest, but a little exercise might help you feel better.

    * 49 percent of moms thought that you should cover your mouth with your hands when you cough or sneeze, which is false. To stop the spread of germs, use a tissue or, if one is not available, cough and sneeze into your inner elbow.

    * 40 percent of moms thought that you feed a cold and starve a fever, which is false. In truth, you should stay hydrated and eat well, no matter what your symptoms.

    * 38 percent of moms thought you should not go outside with wet hair, which is false. In reality, exposure to viruses – not wet hair – causes cold and flu.


To learn more about Vicks humidifiers and other facts from the survey, visit