Handwashing is one simple thing that everyone can do to help prevent infection and illness. Hand hygiene practices are key prevention tools in healthcare settings, daycare facilities, schools, public institutions, and restaurants. According to the Centers for Disease Control, "the most important thing you can do to keep from getting sick is to wash your hands." Judicious hand washing can prevent not only common diseases like colds, but also more serious diseases like Hepatitis A, Meningitis, and infectious diarrhea.
Washing our hands frequently is one of the best ways to avoid getting sick during flu season and throughout the year. It’s also one of the most important steps we can take to keep from spreading germs from one person to another and throughout an entire community. All of the bacteria, viruses, and other microbes that we touch on people, surfaces, and objects throughout the day accumulate on our hands. When we touch our eyes, nose, or mouth, we end up infecting ourselves with these germs. To limit the transfer of germs wash your hands frequently and heed the following advice:
Wash your hands when they are dirty and BEFORE eating;
Washing hands with soap and water is the best way to reduce the number of germs on them. It doesn’t have to be antibacterial soap either; any soap will work. Your next best choice after soap and water is an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Hand sanitizers, while effective at eliminating some germs, do not completely eliminate all germs, especially if hands are visibly dirty.
Basic instructions for washing hands:
For informational purposes only.
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