Washing your hands is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs and illnesses. But when and how should you wash your hands? In this blog, we will explore the answer to this question and provide tips on properly cleaning your hands.
When to Wash Your Hands
There are several times when it is essential to wash your hands:
- Before and after preparing food
- Before eating
- After using the bathroom
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
- After handling garbage
- Before and after caring for someone who is sick
- After treating a cut or wound
- After touching a contaminated surface or object
How to Wash Your Hands
Now that we know when to wash our hands let’s talk about how to do it properly. Follow these steps:
- Wet your hands with clean running water (warm or cold) and apply soap.
- Rub your hands together to make a lather. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Here are a few additional tips to keep in mind when washing your hands:
- If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose, and mouth, with unwashed hands.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow, not your hands.
- Use a clean or paper towel to open doors or turn off faucets in public restrooms.
Washing your hands is crucial to protecting yourself and others from germs and illness. Remember to wash your hands at critical times throughout the day and to do so properly. By following these tips, you can help prevent the spread of illness and stay healthy.