Why Proper Handwashing is Important

Proper Handwashing

Handwashing is one of the basic requirements for maintaining hand hygiene. BioVigil system recommend washing of hands to reduce the contaminants that might cause diseases and spread to others.

Handwashing Prevents Spread of Diseases

Handwashing ensures that hands are free from germs.  Some germs can be spread from one person to another through touch. Subsequently, the spread of pathogens can cause diseases. Common diseases passed through dirty hands include gastrointestinal infections such as cholera, typhoid, and dysentery. Respiratory viruses such as flue-causing viruses can also be spread through unclean hands. There are some diseases called opportunistic infections passed through hands. Opportunistic pathogens are harmless to healthy people but potentially dangerous in individuals with a low immune system such as children, elderly, and people with terminal illnesses.

When to Wash Hands

Hand hygiene is usually affected by several factors that bring hands in contact with disease-causing pathogens common in some areas. Hand hygiene should also be observed before carrying out some tasks. All this is done to remove germs from hands after visiting high-risk areas where a person can collect disease-causing microbes. Hand washing is also recommended before going to some places or handling some work where germs can be introduced through hands. Hands should be washed in the following circumstances:

  • After going to the toilet
  • Prior to eating
  • After changing soiled diapers and cleaning children after using the toilet
  • Before preparing food
  • Before and after visiting an ill person
  • After using a handkerchief, sneezing, and coughing
  • After emptying the dustbin or touching garbage
  • After coming into contact with animals
  • Before, during, and after handling raw food such as meat

How to Properly Wash Hands

To ensure maximum hand hygiene, hands should be properly washed to ensure all germs on the hand are eliminated. The following steps should be followed to ensure hands are properly washed:

  • Clean running water is applied to the hands to wet them.
  • Soap should be applied on already wet hands and rubbed to every part of the hands
  • Rubbing should not be less than20 seconds.
  • The hands are rinsed using clean water
  • The hands are dried using a clean towel or a hot drier.

Tips for Effective Hand Hygiene

  • Hand washing is only effective when done properly. The following tips are effective in handwashing;
  • Running water is better than washing in water put in a basin to ensure bacteria and viruses are not retained in the water.
  • Soap is crucial since it removes more pathogens than when washing with water alone.
  • Liquid soap is better than bar soap. Just like running water, liquid soap does not allow retention of microbes. Bar soap can be contaminated by hands, leading to the spreading of germs to the next person who touches the soap. Nevertheless, bar soap is better than water alone.
  • Good care of hands should be observed. Handwashing is an integral part of hand hygiene; however, the skin forms a barrier to prevent the entry of pathogens. When the skin is compromised, hand hygiene will not prevent the entry of disease-causing germs. A cream should be applied on hands, especially for a person whose hands are in constant contact with water. Gloves should be used to prevent injuries.

These are some simple yet effective tips that you can follow and teach at home for a much safer and healthier life.

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