“Wash your hands!” This is the mantra for these uncertain times. It makes sense as handwashing is one of the best ways to protect yourself and your family from getting sick.
We wanted to take a moment to share with you some guidelines straight from the experts. You can find their recommendations below:
Wash Your Hands Often to Stay Healthy
You can help yourself and your loved ones stay healthy by washing your hands often, especially during these key times when you are likely to get and spread germs:
- Before, during, and after preparing food
- Before eating food
- Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the toilet
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
- After handling pet food or pet treats
- After touching garbage
Follow Five Steps to Wash Your Hands the Right Way
Washing your hands is easy, and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs. Clean hands can stop germs from spreading from one person to another and throughout an entire community—from your home and workplace to childcare facilities and hospitals.
Follow these five steps every time you wash your hands:
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Use Hand Sanitizer When You Can’t Use Soap and Water to Wash your Hands
Washing hands with soap and water is the best way to get rid of germs in most situations. If soap and water are not readily available when you need to wash your hands, you can use an alcohol-based hand-sanitizer contains at least 60% alcohol. You can tell if the sanitizer contains at least 60% alcohol by looking at the product label.
Sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of germs on hands in many situations. However,
- Sanitizers do not get rid of all types of germs.
- Hand sanitizers may not be as effective when hands are visibly dirty or greasy.
- Hand sanitizers might not remove harmful chemicals from hands like pesticides and heavy metals.
Caution! Swallowing alcohol-based hand sanitizers can cause alcohol poisoning if more than a couple of mouthfuls are swallowed. Keep it out of reach of young children and supervise their use.
How to use hand sanitizer
- Apply the gel product to the palm of one hand (read the label to learn the correct amount).
- Rub your hands together.
- Rub the gel over all the surfaces of your hands and fingers until your hands are dry. This should take around 20 seconds.
There are a lot of make-it-yourself ideas floating around the internet right now. Like using vodka as a hand sanitizer. That will NOT be effective. Always refer to the experts when contemplating mixing up your own product. For a do-it-yourself hand-sanitizer we would suggest following the CDC guidelines by using at least 60% alcohol. You may fill some small spray bottles and add a few drops of an essential oil to give it a nice scent.
Protect you and your loved ones from the spread of germs…Wash your Hands!