** WITH FREE PRINTABLE POSTER **
Washing hands is the best way to prevent germs from spreading and is considered our first-line of defense against getting sick.
** WASH YOUR HANDS AND PREVENT THE SPREAD OF GERMS**
Germs can spread many ways, including:
- touching dirty hands
- changing dirty diapers
- through contaminated water and food
- through droplets in the air released during a cough or sneeze
- on contaminated surfaces
- through contact with a sick person’s body fluids
Handwashing with soap removes germs from hands. This helps prevent infections because:
- People frequently touch their eyes, nose, and mouth without even realizing it. Germs can get into the body through the eyes, nose and mouth and make us sick.
- Germs from unwashed hands can get into foods and drinks while people prepare or consume them. Germs can multiply in some types of foods or drinks, under certain conditions, and make people sick.
- Germs from unwashed hands can be transferred to other objects, like handrails, table tops, or toys, and then transferred to another person’s hands.
- Removing germs through hand-washing therefore helps prevent diarrhea and respiratory infections and may even help prevent skin and eye infections.
** TAKE A LOOK AT THE FIVE STEPS TO WASHING HANDS PROPERLY **
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Help minimize the spread of germs and infection by practicing regular hand washing, especially:
- Before, during, and after preparing food
- Before eating food
- Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the toilet
- After changing diapers or helping a child use the toilet
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
- After handling pet food or pet treats
- After touching garbage
*** During the COVID-19 pandemic, you should also clean hands ***
- After you have been in a public place and touched an item or surface that may be frequently touched by other people, such as door handles, tables, gas pumps, shopping carts, or electronic cashier registers/screens, etc.
- Before touching your eyes, nose, or mouth because that’s how germs enter our bodies.
Remember, the twenty seconds it takes to wash your hands can help prevent you from getting sick and decrease your visits to the doctor 🙂
Resources: Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and Kids Health from Nemours
*** FREE PRINTABLE “WASH YOUR HANDS!” POSTER ***
Candice A. Lawrence