What’s the best way to protect yourself from getting sick? Need a clue? It’s not any kind of secret home remedy. It’s not any kind of pill. You should be doing it multiple times a day. Give up? It’s washing your hands. Washing your hands is the easiest and most effective way to prevent germs from spreading.
Why is washing your hands so important?
Feces (a.k.a. poop) from people and animals is a major source of germs like salmonella, E coli, and norovirus that cause diarrhea. It can also cause some respiratory infections such as adenovirus and hand-foot-mouth disease. These kind of germs get onto people’s hands after they use the toilet or change a diaper. They can also get onto people’s hands in less conspicuous ways such as handling raw meat which can be contaminated with invisible animal feces. Germs can also get onto your hands from touching objects that have germs on them because someone sneezed or coughed on them. When these germs get onto your hands and are not washed off, they pass from person to person and can make people sick.
Grossed out yet? Yeah, us too.
When should you wash your hands?
While it’s important to regularly wash your hands, it’s even more important to wash your hands after certain activities. Wash your hands:
- Before, during, and after preparing food
- Before eating food
- Before and after caring for someone who is sick
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the toilet
- After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used 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
How do you properly wash your hands.
With just five simple steps you can help reduce the spread of diarrheal and respiratory illness so you and your family can stay healthy.
- Step 1: Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Step 2: Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Step 3: Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Step 4: Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Step 5: Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Remember if you do end up getting sick this cold and flu season, we’re here to help. We provide services for acute illnesses such as fever, respiratory illness, stomach pain, skin rash and minor injuries. Located just off Highway 45 in Guntown, Mississippi you’ll find the healthcare you need close to where you live and work. We accept both appointments and walk-ins. Give us a call today at (662) 348-3342