Why is hand washing good for the health of the people around you?
You can pass the germs from your hands to others when you interact with them. You can also leave the germs from your unwashed hands on shared surfaces like doorknobs and shared equipment like keyboards. Washing your hands removes these germs and helps to keep the people around you healthy.
Your hands pick-up germs while:
using the bathroom and changing diapers
touching animals, their food and treats
shaking hands and touching others
handling raw meat, raw eggs or unwashed vegetables
being around people who are sick
touching surfaces and objects around you.
6 Steps for Hand Washing:
You need running water, liquid pump soap and paper towels.
Wet hands: with warm running water
Apply liquid soap: Antibacterial soaps are not necessary
Lather hands: Be sure to scrub:
between your fingers,
your fingertips and fingernails,
the back of your hands and wrists
Rub your hands for 20 seconds – the time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday” twice.
Rinse well under running water
Dry your hands with paper towel
Use the paper towel to turn off the taps
Wash your hands:
After using the bathroom or changing diapers.
After touching animals, their waste (poop), their food or treats
After coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose
After contact with someone who is sick
Before eating and preparing food.
Before touching your mouth, eyes, nose or open cuts
When soap and water are not available alcohol-based hand sanitizers can be used to reduce the number of germs on your hands. Sanitizers should contain 60-90% alcohol.
Alcohol hand sanitizers are good at killing bacteria and most viruses. Sanitizers cannot get rid of all types of germs though. They do not work well when your hands are visibly dirty. If you can see dirt on your hands, it is important to wash them with soap and water.
Why use alcohol hand sanitizer? Aren’t there other products available that do not use alcohol?
Alcohol hand sanitizers have the best effectiveness against bacteria and viruses. Many non-alcohol hand sanitizers are made with a chemical called quaternary ammonia compound. This chemical does not work well against several common germs including rhinovirus (a cause of the common cold) and norovirus (a common cause of diarrhea and vomiting).