Hand washing is a simple and effective infection control intervention. Hand hygiene is the single most important procedure for preventing the transmission of diseases and infections. The most important thing to stay fit and healthy is frequent hand washing. Frequent hand washing in the right manner helps you wash away germs such as bacteria and viruses that you have picked from other surfaces.

Global Hand washing Day is observed every year on October15. Washing you hands frequently is one of the most cost effective interventions. Most of the infectious diseases can be prevented by simple handwashing. Think of the huge savings in terms of health budget, whether, it is the country’s health budget or the family’s health budget.

When Should you wash your hands:

  • When your hands are dirty
  • After using the washroom
  • Before eating, serving or preparing food
  • After touching pets or other animals
  • After outdoor activities
  • Before and after visiting anyone who’s sick
  • After blowing your nose, sneezing or coughing
  • After touching garbage bag
  • Wash your hands for every reason !!

Steps for Hand Washing 

  • Wet hands with water.
  • Apply enough soap to cover the surface of your hands.
  • Keep your right palm over left palm thus interlacing fingers and vice versa.
  • Rub you palm to palm with fingers interlaced.
  • Rub your hands together vigorously and scrub all surfaces: Lather up on both sides of your hands, your wrists, between your fingers, and around your nails.
  • Do rotational rubbing of left thumb clasped in right palm and vice versa.
  • After that rotationally rub your hands backwards and forward with clasped fingers of right hand in left palm and vice versa.
  • Rinse hands with water and dry thoroughly with a single use towel and use the towel to turn off the tap.
  • Now your hands are clean and safe.

Using Alcohol based formulation

  • Apply a palmful of the product in a cupped hand and cover all surfaces.
  • Rub hands to palm.
  • Keep your right palm over left dorsum with interlaced fingers and vice versa.
  • Keep palm to palm with fingers interlaced.
  • Now place backs of fingers to opposing palms with fingers interlocked.
  • Now do rotational rubbing of left thumb clasped in right palm and vice versa.
  • Rotational rubbing, backwards and forwards with clasped fingers of right hand in left palm and vice versa.
  • Once dry, your hands are safe.

Points to Note :

  • Keep natural nails short (tips less than 0.5 cm long).
  • To prevent dry skin, use a mild soap with warm water, pat rather than rub hands dry, and apply a moisturizing lotion.
  • When there is no soap or water available, waterless hand soaps or sanitizers are a good alternative. They’re usually available as a liquid or wipes and often come in small travel size.

References 

http://www.mayoclinic.org

/http://kidshealth.org

/http://globalhandwashing.org

/http://www.cdc.gov/

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