If you read our articles regularly then we’re pretty sure that you wash your hands! It may be a simple habit, but it’s extremely important to keep disease at bay. Washing your hands is your first line of protection when it comes to health. Here’s why we bring it up so often:
The science behind hand washing
Germs – bacteria and viruses – are geniuses when it comes to spreading disease. Remember, their only job is to live and to make more of themselves, and they do that by spreading from person to person! But getting from a toilet seat, a used tissue or door handle to a new human host can be a bit of a challenge. So, if you’re a germ, you wait for the next human to put out a hand and give you a ride! Then, when they rub their eyes, touch their face or eat something, you have full access to a new host! Unless they wash their hands, that is. If that happens, all the germs go straight down the drain!
Is rinsing hands good enough?
Just putting your hands under running water isn’t enough – some germs know how to cling! Here’s how to scrub those germs away:
- wash your hands in warm water, and use soap to make it slippery for any germs
- it doesn’t have to be anti-bacterial soap, just make sure you give your whole hand a good soapy rub, and that means between your fingers
- rinse off and dry with a clean towel or paper towels
How often should I wash my hands?
You don’t have to make it an hourly ritual! Here are the times when hand-washing really counts:
- after using the bathroom
- before cooking or eating
- after doing housework or cleaning
- after touching your pets
- both before and after visiting sick friends or relatives
- after blowing sneezing, coughing or blowing your nose
- after travelling on public transport, like a bus, taxi or train
When we get busy, we sometimes forget these basic rituals. Don’t be a victim of the next flu-virus that your colleague left on the office door-handle – wash up!