With Global hand washing day on October 15, its time to review our practices, and up our game if needed. Clean hands keep individuals, families, and communities healthy by reducing the spread of germs and viruses. Many people do not realize that these can spread from people to surfaces or foods and then back to people.
It feels like the last two years have been global hand washing years. But believe it or not, some people are still not washing their hands efficiently or frequently enough. As more and more people are shopping and interacting maskless, they are also washing their hands less frequently than they did during the height of the Covid 19 pandemic. I must confess, even I have laxed off a bit myself. So, it is time to reinstate my good hand washing routine of washing hands first thing when I get home or to the office. I have always been good about washing up before cooking, after using the bathroom, sneezing or blowing my nose.
How to wash hands
- Wet hands with clean running water, turn off water and apply soap.
- Lather hands by rubbing them together with soap. Remember to lather the backs of your hands, between your finger and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds (the time it takes to hum “Happy Birthday “ song twice).
- Rinse hands under running water.
- Use your elbow or a paper towel to turn off the running water.
- Dry hands using a clean towel, paper towel or air dry them.
- If you are using a public bathroom, use the paper towel to open the door so you don’t cross contaminate your hands.
Clean Hands and Food Safety
Food Safety starts with clean hands. Before you unload your groceries or get to work in the kitchen, wash your hands with soap and water.
When to Wash your Hands
- Eating every meal
- Working or helping in the kitchen
- Handling raw meat, flour, or eggs
- Using the toilet
- Handling your cell phone, tablet, or laptop
- Touching pets or animals
- Blowing you nose or touching your face
For tips on how to wash hands most effectively go to www.fightbac.org. This site also has activities to teach children the right way to wash their hands.