A good handwashing routine is one of the easiest ways to prevent the spread of germs and help keep us healthy.
Did you know studies have shown that handwashing can prevent 1 in 3 diarrhea-related sickness and 1 in 5 respiratory infections, such as a cold or the flu.
When should you wash your hands?
- Before eating and during food preparation
- Before and after caring for someone who is sick
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the washroom, or assisting another in the washroom.
- After blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing or using a tissue.
- After touching an animal, animal food, animal cages or animal feces
- After touching garbage
What is the right way to wash your hands?
- Wet your hands with clean running water (warm or cold) and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap
- Scrub all surfaces of your hands, including the palms, backs, fingers, between your fingers, and under your nails. Keep scrubbing for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song twice
- Rinse your hands under clean, running water
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them
Handwashing helps prevent the spread of infections for these reasons:
- People frequently touch their mouth, nose, and eyes without even realizing it and introduce germs into their bodies
- Germs from unwashed hands may get into food and drinks during preparation and consumption
- Germs from unwashed hands can be transferred to other objects such as door knobs, tables, and toys then transferred to another person
If you are not able wash your hands right away, sanitizer that is 60% alcohol is an ok substitute when soap and water are not available, but a good hand wash is still the best way to keep ourselves, and those around us healthy.
Stay healthy, wash your hands!
Whitevalley Resource Center would like to thank our sponsors, The United Way, and Interior Health.