National Handwashing Awareness Week

National Handwashing Awareness Week is December 3-9. This time of year, it seems like there are so many people that we know who are sick.  They may be sneezing, coughing, and blowing their nose.  Guess where all those germs end up most of the time?  In their hands.  Germy hands are the biggest reason so many people become ill.  For this reason, healthcare providers remind you how important good handwashing is.

The best way to stop the spread of germs is to wash your hands, but it must be done the right way.  Below are some steps to best wash away germs that might be on your hands.

  • Wet hands with warm water and put soap on hands.
  • Rub hands together firmly for at least 20 seconds, covering all parts of the hands spending more time on fingernails and parts where jewelry is worn.
  • Rinse hands with water.
  • Dry well with a paper towel.
  • Use a towel to turn off the faucet.

If soap and water are not nearby, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol.  Most of the time alcohol-based hand sanitizers can quickly lower the number of germs on the hands, but sanitizers do not remove all types of germs. It might not get rid of harmful chemicals or visible dirt. Also, everyone should try to cough or sneeze into a tissue or the upper sleeve of their arm instead of their hands.  This helps keep germs away from objects we touch a lot with our hands.

Remember, you can help stop the spread of sickness.  It is spread from person to person.  Stay home when you are ill and stay away from others who are sick when possible. Wash hands often with soap and water.  When you do not have soap and water nearby, use an alcohol-based hand rub.  Clean commonly touched surfaces at home, work, or school.  If you think you or a family member may be sick, stay home. Contact your health care provider, if needed.

For more information on this topic, go to https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/index.html or https://www.cdc.gov/flu/

For questions or to learn more, call Four Corners at 402-362-2621 or 877-337-3573 or email us at info@fourcorners.ne.gov