Why It’s Important To Wash Your Hands?

Why It’s Important To Wash Your Hands?

Handwashing is only one part of hand hygiene. Looking after your skin generally is important, as your skin is your most effective barrier against infection.

A number of infectious diseases can be spread from one person to another by contaminated hands. These diseases include gastrointestinal infections, such as Salmonella, and respiratory infections, such as influenza. Washing your hands properly can help prevent the spread of the germs (like bacteria and viruses) that cause these diseases.

Why it's important to wash your hands?
Why it’s important to wash your hands?

Liquid soap

Generally, it is better to use liquid soap than bar soap, particularly at work. However, bar soap is better than no soap.

Use running water

Use running water instead of a basin of standing water that could become contaminated through use.

Warm water may be better than cold for handwashing as soap lathers (soaps up) better with warm water. However, cold water and soap are still suitable. Hot water can damage the skin’s natural oils. Over time, this can cause dermatitis.

To wash hands properly

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water, and turn off the tap.
  2. Apply soap and lather well for 20 seconds (or longer if the dirt is ingrained).
  3. Rub hands together rapidly across all surfaces of your hands and wrists.
  4. Don’t forget the backs of your hands, your wrists, between your fingers, and under your fingernails.
  5. If possible, remove rings and watches before you wash your hands, or ensure you move the rings to wash under them, as microorganisms can exist under them.
  6. Rinse well under running water and make sure all traces of soap are removed.
  7. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them
  8. It is best to use paper towels (or single-use cloth towels).
  9. Dry under any rings, as they can be a source of future contamination if they remain moist.
  10. Hot air driers can be used.

An idea at home: give each family member their own towel and wash the towels often.

Soap is important

Washing hands with soap and water will remove substantially more disease-causing organisms than washing hands with water alone. For people who find that soap causes skin irritation, it is useful to note that soaps can have a different pH – they may be neutral, slightly alkaline, or slightly acidic, and perfumes in soap may also cause irritation. Changing soap may help some people