The Press Newspaper
It sounds like common sense, but doctors and the Centers for Disease Control think it bears repeating - hand-washing is by far one of the best ways to prevent germs from spreading and to keep you and your family from getting sick.
It’s the first line of defense against germs – such as bacteria and viruses – can be transmitted several different ways, especially by touching dirty hands or other contaminated surfaces.
“Hand awareness is knowing where your hands are and what they are doing at all times,” said Will Sawyer, M.D., a solo family physician in Cincinnati.
When germs are picked up by your hands, you can unknowingly become infected simply by touching your eyes, nose or mouth (also known as the “T Zone”). Once you are infected, it is usually just a matter of time before the whole family comes down with the same illness because they also plant germs in the T Zone
“I recommend everyone follow the four principles of hand awareness:
1. Wash your hands when they are dirty and before eating.
2. Do not cough into your hands.
3. Do not sneeze into your hands.
4. Above all, do not put your fingers into your eyes, nose or mouth.
Good handwashing is your first line of defense against the spread of many illnesses – and not just the common cold. More serious illnesses such as meningitis, bronchiolitis, influenza, hepatitis A and most types of infectious diarrhea can be stopped with the simple act of washing your hands.
Make sure to wash your hands correctly several times a day using warm water, lathering soap for 10 to 15 seconds, rinsing and drying your hands with a clean towel.
Do not underestimate the power of handwashing; the few seconds you spend at the sink could save you trips to the doctor’s office. And above all, “Do not touch the T Zone,” says Sawyer, to insure you do not “give” yourself the flu or flu-like illness.
Minimize the germs passed around your family by making it a rule to wash hands: • Before eating and cooking;
How to wash your hands correctly