Avoid these mistakes when washing your hands

By: Sammi Ibrahem,Sr

You may think that your hands are completely free of any germs and bacteria, but the hygiene you think you are achieving may not be sufficient.

What are the things that you should pay attention to every time you wash your hands?

Proper hand washing requires commitment to a group of key steps, and in turn, stops making common mistakes that make you more susceptible to disease.

Today, learn the principles of washing your hands by avoiding these mistakes, which were highlighted by Professor Pathology and Microbiology, Doctor Philip Tiarno, from «NYU Langone Health»:

Ignore soap

In fact, not using soap is a very common mistake. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, washing hands with soap and water is the best way to get rid of germs.

As for water only, it will reduce the bacteria to 23 percent, according to a study published in January 2011 in the “International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health”. While the researchers found that the use of soap will reduce the total bacteria to about 8 percent. It does not require putting water on the hands, but specifically removing particles.

• Not rubbing enough

Technically, hands should be washed for at least 20 seconds, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. To achieve this without getting bored, Happy Birthday can be sung twice during the process.

The length of hand washing affects the amount of bacteria that are disposed of. According to a study published in July 2012 in the “International Association for Food Protection”, washing your hands for 20 seconds will result in a further decrease in germs compared to washing for 5 seconds.

Forget about some parts of the hand

Although you use your fingers to hold objects or use a computer, it is also important to rub the back parts of the hands with soap and also between the fingers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. An inch wash is required towards the wrist to ensure that as much bacteria as possible are removed. Also, the area under the nails should not be ignored as the germs can hide.

• Recontamination immediately after washing

If the handle of the sink in public places is not automatic, you should not turn it off once you have finished washing your hands, or you will expose your skin to the same germs that were present before washing. The same applies to the paper-based tissue machine if it is not automatic. The solution is very simple, and it requires closing the water handle and opening the bathroom door with a tissue instead of clean hands.

Reliance heavily on hand sanitizer

There is no doubt that a hand sanitizer that contains no less than 70 percent of alcohol is a good solution when soap and water are not available, but it should not be a permanent alternative to regular washing, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sterile hands do not get rid of all types of germs, and it may not be as effective if the hand is clearly dirty and greasy. On the other hand, using the sterilizer also has a protocol, so that it must be rubbed for at least 20 seconds and ensure that this includes between the fingers, under the nails, and the wrist.

When should hands be washed?

Dr. Tiarno stressed the need to wash hands after entering the bathroom, before preparing food and after it, before eating, and before contact with a sick person and after it, before and after changing the diaper, and before and after treating the wound, after coughing, sneezing, and cleaning the nose, and after touching an animal, feeding it, or disposing of its droppings And after touching the trash, after contacting common surfaces, as is the case with machines in the gym for example.

The aim of all this is to reduce the number of germs that are transmitted from the hands to the mouth, eyes or nose, which are the channels of entry into the body, thus causing the disease 80 percent of the time.

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