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Key facts about hand hygiene

Hand wash!! Hmm…… well, I don’t need that, I didn’t touch anything dirty“.

Isn’t this the first thing that comes up in your mind before pouncing on that yummy piece of cake? But wait!! Have you ever thought how correct that is? The hand that looks clean, smells clean, is it actually clean?

A recent study says that the cellphone that our hand always clutches on to carries more germs than a toilet seat. Yes!! You read that right. So now recall the number of times you fiddled with your phone while having lunch today? Still feeling smug?!

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Here are ten basic things to remember about hand hygiene:

  • The concept of hand hygiene not only holds good for healthcare professionals but also for all of us right from kids to adults.
  • Long nails look pretty but are actually the harbour of microbes.
  • Your laptop and your cell phones are not as clean as they appear.
  • The pet at your home may look very clean and cute but it has multiple mites (parasites) which are a part of the flora of your pet’s skin.

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  • Wiping your hands post a sneeze doesn’t kill germs!
  •  Common diseases like influenza, conjunctivitis, common cold and cough, etc. spread through your hands.
  • Your food can also transmit microbes. Washing your hand post handling raw meat is a must!
  •  Hand wash with plain water does no good, soap and water is a better option but using an alcohol-based hand wash is the best.
  • Touching the tap post hand wash contaminates your hand.
  • It is best to use hand sanitizers as we don’t need water to use those and they can easily fit in your bag. However, soiled hands or visibly dirty hands need a  handwash or a soap.

Maintaining good hand hygiene habits not only prevents you from falling sick but also reduces the risk of passing the infection to other people.

Consult a top General Physician

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References

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  • Handwashing: a corporate activity, http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/hygiene/hand/handwashing-corporate.html
  • Interventions to Improve Hand Hygiene Compliance: Brief Update Review http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK133371/#

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