16 Apr Wash your hands!
We are almost constantly surrounded by people and will encounter germs throughout our days. It may sound so simple, but the main step to take when wanting to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others is by keeping your hands clean. Many diseases and conditions are spread by not washing hands properly with soap and clean, running water. Touching any object or surface puts you at risk of picking up unwanted germs because we cannot control who has coughed or sneezed on it , or if it was touched by some other contaminated object. This is how germs can be passed from person to person and make people sick.
People frequently touch their eyes, nose, and mouth without even realising it. Germs can get into the body through the eyes, nose and mouth and make us sick. Removing germs through handwashing therefore helps prevent diarrhoea and respiratory infections and may even help prevent skin and eye infections. Teaching people about handwashing helps them and their communities stay healthy.
During the coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic, one of the cheapest, easiest and most important ways of limiting the spread of the virus was to wash your hands frequently with soap and water. Respiratory viruses like COVID-19 spread when mucus or droplets containing the virus get into your body through your eyes, nose or throat. Most often, this happens through your hands. Hands are also one of the most common ways that the virus spread from one person to the next and the statistics around how many people who do not was their hands are shocking. Below is a broad outline of handwashing activity after using restrooms:
Being reminded to wash your hands may seem to be a bit offensive towards your intellect, but the COVID-19 is a clear example of how many of us take this tiny action for granted. If we know the benefits of keeping the hands clean as much as possible and also keeping our environments properly sanitised, it will maybe give us the commitment to hygiene that we need and take hand washing more seriously. Here are a few of the benefits that washing your hands the right way provides:
• Handwashing helps to prevent germs from entering our bodies through our eyes, nose, and mouth.
• It can help prevent common illnesses such as diarrhea, as well as respiratory, or skin and eye infections.
• It will limit bacteria and viruses from transferring to food during preparation.
• Less time off work and school
• Helps to avoid contamination and medication resistance
Below, we have a step-by-step process to share with you all for effective handwashing:
Step 1: Wet hands with running water
Step 2: Apply enough soap to cover wet hands
Step 3: Scrub all surfaces of the hands – including back of hands, between fingers and under
nails – for at least 20 seconds.
Step 4: Rinse thoroughly with running water
Step 5: Dry hands with a clean cloth or single-use towel
You should wash your hands for at least 20-30 seconds. You can use any temperature of water to wash your hands. Cold water and warm water are equally effective at killing germs and viruses – as long as you use enough soap. In addition to handwashing, use a sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol and rub it into your hands for at least 20 seconds to ensure full coverage.
Germs spread more easily from wet skin than from dry skin, so drying your hands completely is an important step. Paper towels or clean cloths are the most effective way to remove germs without spreading them to other surfaces.
Make sure to wash your hands:
• After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
• After visiting a public space, including public transportation, markets and places of worship
• After touching surfaces outside of the home, including money
• Before, during and after caring for a sick person
• Before and after eating
• After using the toilet
• Before and after eating
• After handling garbage
• After touching animals and pets
• After changing babies’ diapers or helping children use the toilet
• When your hands are visibly dirty
This all sounds reasonable and it seems like a no-brainer. However, there are still a lot of people who don’t do it enough. That is why they need to be reminded, especially in the workplace where they can do the most harm. Ensure the safe and healthy workplace and home by reminding all to wash their hands. Do not underestimate the power of hand washing, it could literally save you from becoming a regular at the doctor’s office.