Washing Your Hands

The Importance Of Washing Your Hands

The act of washing your hands is something we have been taught from a very early age. It is something that has been promoted ever since the medical world discovered a link between uncleanliness and all the different types of germs that there are.

The link sounds obvious to us today, but 100-150yrs ago, no knew enough about germs to make the link. It was discovered that the simple act of washing your hands, could prevent a person from getting sick or from spreading germs and disease.

Washing your hands

Steps To Washing Your Hands Properly

The best way to scrub germs away:

  1. Wet your hands – Use clean, running water (warm or cold).
  2. Use soap – Rub the soap through your hands to make a soapy lather. Any soap will work, not just an antibacterial one.
  3. Wash – Wash thoroughly in between your fingers, on the backs of your hands, and under your nails where germs like to hide, and don’t forget your wrists… for about 20-30 seconds
  4. Rinse & dry – Using a clean towel, dry your hands.

When To Wash Your Hands

Make a habit of regular hand washing. It’s extremely important to wash hands:

  • before eating and cooking
  • after using the bathroom
  • after cleaning around the house
  • after touching pets and other animals
  • before and after visiting or taking care of sick people
  • after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • after being outside 
Kids Washing their hands

No Soap Or Water To Wash Your Hands?

Sometimes you won’t be close to a clean supply of water or even a bar of soap. What do you do then?

Waterless hand sanitizers, soaps and scrubs are a good alternative. You can keep travel size cleansers that come in the forms of; liquids, wipes, sprays, or towelettes.

Keep a small supply in your handbag, car, locker, purse or sports bag for, those little emergencies.

The Benefits Of Washing Your Hands Properly

A good hand washing regime is your first line of defence against the spread of illness, germs, nail fungal infections, skin conditions (Eczema) and others.

Regular hand washing helps protect you against everything from the common cold, the flu to more serious infections such as; meningitis, bronchiolitis, many forms of diarrhoea and hepatitis A.

Freedom from illness just by hand washing

How Germs Spread

Germs can spread in many ways. Here are just a few examples:

  • Touching other people with poor hygiene
  • Changing dirty diapers and not hand washing afterwards
  • Through contaminated water and food
  • cross contamination of food types – meats and veg prepared on the same surfaces
  • Through droplets in the air released during a cough or sneeze
  • Surfaces that are contaminated
  • Through contact with a sick person’s bodily fluids

When you come into contact with germs, you can infect other areas of your body just by touching them, for example; touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.

We all have a body immune system, but it is better it is saved to fight hardened real diseases and infections than to be distracted by fighting ‘roaming’ germs. Help yourself stay healthy is the mantra of the day!

Don’t forget, the power of hand washing cannot be underestimated. The time spent washing your hands properly at the sink, could save you trips and hours sat in your doctor’s office waiting room!