COVID-19 pandemic has brought dynamic changes in everyone’s lifestyle. It has changed eating habits, sleeping habits and more importantly cleaning habits. Personal hygiene is the most trending topic these days. Hygiene is the only way to fight germs and viruses, and hands play a vital role in transferring these entities. In our day to day life, 95% of the tasks involve hands, and unfortunately 95% of the people don’t know the proper ways to wash hands.

Many people don’t even realize the importance of washing hands. Actually even people are not to be blamed. Prior to this pandemic, many advertisements used to mislead people about washing hands. Now, it is time to be aware and alert about hygiene and to get thorough knowledge about washing hands and applying it in our day to day life.

By the time, you must have come to know that, you need to get acquainted with the proper ways of washing hands. Go through this entire article, it will change you for the better.

Why should you wash hands?

They say, “While it may seem small, the ripple effects of small things are extraordinary”. This statement is applicable for washing hands. Yet people avoid washing hands frequently. According to a survey of Centres of Disease Control (CDC), keeping hands clean, is one of the most important things in maintaining personal hygiene

Many people touch their nose and mouth frequently and that is where it all starts. Here the question arises, what if you have a habit of washing hands frequently and still suffer with infections? No need to worry! You can check whether your hand washing technique and equipment is effective or not.

When should you wash hands?

There is no specific time to wash hands. But it is important to wash hands before or after the following events; after removing PPE kit, after arriving home, before wearing face mask, after removing face mask, after returning home, before visiting or taking care of old, sick person, before eating or cooking, after cleaning house, after shaking hands, before touching kids, after feeding pets, after sneezing, after applying oil to hairs, after using toilet or bathroom, after washing vegetables or fruits, after coughing or blowing your nose, after playing outdoor games, after cleaning your vehicle, after scratching on body, after handling garbage, after changing diaper of baby and many more.

Now, you know why and when you should wash hands. It is time to reveal some myths about hand washing methods.

Myths about washing hands:

#1. Time doesn’t matter 

Don’t hurry while washing hands, let it take proper time to clean. Think of the chorus of your favourite song to keep you engaged while washing hands.

#2. Hot water can improve microbe removal 

According to studies, high temperature of water doesn’t affect removal of germs. In fact, there is no research to prove that high temperature assists the removal of microbes. Instead cold water and hot water both are equivalent in microbe removal for hand washing. Hot water requires extra energy which is both costly and harmful for the environment.

#3. Drying hands don’t count

Studies have proved that transfer of microbes is quick over wet surfaces. So drying wet hands properly assists in microbe removal.

#4. Sanitizers can replace hand wash or soap 

Sanitizers are convenient but not effective. Although they contain alcohol, which can remove microbes, it is suggested by many experts that they should be used in emergency only. Soap and handwash remove the germs effectively.

Best Hand Wash Technique

It is not as elementary as it seems, “Great things are done by a series of small things brought together”. Unlearn everything you know and start following the series of given below steps, we have brought together for you and your loved ones to bring positive changes in your life.

Steps to follow:

Step 1: Wet both the hands under clean and running water.

Step 2: Apply soap or liquid hand wash, preferably liquid hand wash but gently. Make foam.

Step 3: Rub it all over your hands, between fingers and back of your hands and under the nails too .

Step 4: At last, soap your wrists as well.

Step 5: Wash off both the hands with clean and running water.

Step 6: Dry your hands with a clean and dry towel or paper towel.

Step 7: Hurray! Finally, your hands are actually germ free.

Welcome! Now you are among those who actually know how to wash hands in a proper way.
Washing hands with soap and water is the best but sometimes soap and handwash are not readily available due to unavoidable reasons. In their absence, sanitizers play an important role in maintaining hygiene.

What is sanitizer?

Sanitizer is a liquid or gel, used to kill infectious entities on hands. Effective sanitizers contain at least 60% alcohol. Alcohol is effective in killing bacteria, germs and fungus.

Guide to buy sanitizer

In an article of  Indian Express, Dr Farah Ingle, Senior Consultant, Internal Medicine at Hiranandani Hospital in Vashi, says that people have to read the combination on the bottle of the sanitizer before purchasing it. Further she adds, “It should have antiviral and antibacterial properties. It should always be alcohol based, with 60 to 70 percent alcohol.”

So, do check alcohol proportions and chemicals added before buying hand sanitizer.

How to use sanitizer?

Step 1: Apply gel product sanitizer on your both hands.

Step 2: Rub both hands over each other.

Step 3: Rub both hands over each other until both the hands are dry.Now, your hands are germ free.
Keep in mind, “Sanitizer removes germs, doesn’t kill them.”
So wash your hands again with soap and water as soon as it is physically possible for you.

Stay fit! Stay clean! Stay safe!

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