Probably the most important thing that you can do to keep from getting sick is to wash your hands.
By frequently washing your hands you wash away the germs that you have picked up from other people, or from contaminated surfaces, or from animals and animal waste and avoid transferring the bacteria to other people. You can also spread germs directly to others or onto surfaces that other people touch. And before you know it, everybody around you is getting sick. This is the benefit of having a portable hand wash sink nearby and accessible when you are away from a water source. Oftentimes a simple handwash sink located in a strategic location can prevent the spreading of harmful bacteria.
One example of this occurred in the 1800′s where a physician (Ignaz Semmelweis) noticed an alarming mortality rate occurring in the maternity wards and found out that the students who were working in the maternity wards as a part of their medical studies were not sterilizing properly and were thus transferring pathogenic bacteria from cadavers they were working on in class to the expectant mothers. (Research on Internet using Ignaz Semmelweis as the search term.)
What happens if you do not wash your hands frequently?
You pick up germs from other sources and then you infect yourself when you:
- Touch your eyes
- Or your nose
- Or your mouth.
One of the most common ways people catch colds is by rubbing their nose or their eyes after their hands have been contaminated with the cold virus.
The important thing to remember is that, in addition to colds, some pretty serious diseases and viruses — like hepatitis A, meningitis, infectious diarrhea, Ecoli, etc. — can easily be prevented if people make a habit of washing their hands.
When should you wash your hands?
You should wash your hands often. Probably more often than you do now because you can’t see germs with the naked eye or smell them, so you do not really know where they are hiding.
It is especially important to wash your hands
- Before, during, and after you prepare food
- Before you eat, and after you use the bathroom
- After handling animals or animal waste
- When your hands are dirty, and
- More frequently when someone in your home is sick.
What is the correct way to wash your hands?
- First wet your hands and apply liquid or clean bar soap. Place the bar soap on a rack and allow it to drain. Next rub your hands vigorously together and scrub all surfaces.
- Continue for 10 – 15 seconds or about the length of a little tune. It is the soap combined with the scrubbing action that helps dislodge and remove germs.
- Rinse well and dry your hands.
It is estimated that one out of three people do not wash their hands after using the restroom. So these tips are also important when you are out in public.
Washing your hands regularly can certainly save a lot on medical bills. Because it costs less than a penny, you could say that this penny’s worth of prevention can save you an expensive visit to the doctor.
Additional Information provided in this article came from the website from Center for Disease Control (CDC) (http://www.cdc.gov).
All Safety Products, Inc. sells a variety of hand wash sinks and equipment on our website. Please visit our handwash sinks and sanitizer section.