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Since the outbreak of COVID-19, you have probably been told a thousand times that keeping your hands clean is one of the best ways to protect yourself from catching the virus.
You might think that it is not much of a big deal, but did you know that it can actually save your life?
Hand washing and the use of hand sanitizers have been proven as key ways to preventing germs and infections.
There are proper ways on how you can keep your hands clean to protect yourself and your family against COVID-19. Here are the things that you need to know about handwashing and the use of hand sanitizers:
One of the easiest and most effective ways to keep your hands clean is to wash your hands with soap and water. According to The Hospitalist, soaps can help in killing the virus because they are alkaline surfactants that pick up dirt, bacteria, and viruses, which are removed from the skin when the soap is rinsed off with water. But you can’t just wash your hands any way you want and whenever you feel like it. In doing it, it is important to follow these rules:
How to Wash Your Hands the Right Way
It might seem like a simple task, but to thoroughly get rid of germs when washing your hands, you should follow this step-by-step process every time:
- Wet your hands with running water.
- Apply soap and rub your hands together.
- Scrub your hands. Make sure you cover all the surfaces of your hands, including the back of hands, between fingers, and nails.
- Rinse your hands thoroughly under running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean cloth or a single-use towel, or you can also air dry them.
How Long Should You Wash Your Hands
The length of time for handwashing depends on the amount of dirt you have on your hands. There are times that you don’t have to wash your hands for too long, especially when you feel like they are still clean. However, evidence suggests that washing your hands for about 15-30 seconds will help remove germs from your hands than washing them for shorter periods.
So to ensure the effectiveness of handwashing, you should do it for at least 20 seconds. You can sing or hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end if you don’t have a timer. The longer you wash your hands, the more you can make sure that all the dirt is washed off.
The Key Times to Wash Your Hands
Washing your hands often is important to prevent the spread of germs. Germs can spread from other people when you touch contaminated surfaces or objects and then touch your mouth, eyes, and nose without washing your hands first. It can also happen if you cough, sneeze, or blow your nose into your hands and then touch other people’s hands.
This is why it is important to wash your hands not just before and after eating food, but also before, during, and after meal preparations. You should also wash your hands after using the toilet, after touching garbage, after touching and feeding an animal, and more importantly, after coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose.
Use of Hand Sanitizers
If soap and water are not readily available when cleaning your hands, you can also use hand sanitizers. Although hand sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs like how washing your hands with soap and water does, they can still help in reducing the number of microbes on your hands when used correctly. Just like handwashing, there are also proper ways on how to use hand sanitizers.
How to Use Hand Sanitizers
In using hand sanitizers, you should follow these steps:
- Apply the gel to the palm of your hand.
- Rub your hands gently together.
- Rub the sanitizer over all the surfaces of your hands. You should do this for at least 20 seconds or until your hands are dry.
How Often Should You Use Hand Sanitizers
Since it is more convenient to use hand sanitizer, especially when you are outside of your home, you can try to use it as often as possible. It is also ideal to use alcohol-based hand sanitizers to help prevent the coronavirus. Although it does not kill all kinds of bacteria and viruses, you can at least prevent them from spreading when you do not have access to handwashing facilities.
What Kind of Hand Sanitizer Should You Use
There are two types of hand sanitizers: alcohol-based and alcohol-free. Although both can be effective in killing germs, alcohol-based hand sanitizers are proven to be a more practical alternative when you can’t wash your hands with soap and water. Not only are they found to be effective at killing many types of bacteria, but they are also effective against many viruses.
However, it is important to make sure that the hand sanitizer you use is safe and is suited for your skin type to avoid allergies and irritations. This is why you should only buy such products from a reliable hand sanitizer manufacturer. It is also ideal to purchase customized hand sanitizers that will best suit your needs. While in quarantine, it is also important that you have enough stock of hand sanitizers at home so you won’t have to risk going out in case you run out of one.
At this time of a global pandemic, we have to make sure that we keep ourselves and our families safe and healthy. If we will follow the safety tips and precautions from the government and medical professionals, we can save ourselves and others from the COVID-19 virus. By frequently washing your hands, you can protect yourself and others from the virus.