Last Updated on August 17, 2019 by Bryan Fiveash
Disclaimer: I received samples from Purell for my family to try out. Opinions are my own.
We’ve been told this for many years, and it’s still true today: Keeping your hands clean by washing them thoroughly with soap and water is one of the best ways -and perhaps the easiest way- to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to other people. Using a hand sanitizer in addition to hand washing further strengthens your line of defense.
Growing up, no matter how often I was told to wash my hands, I never really took the importance of it seriously. Now that I have a family of my own, I have a far different outlook on keeping hands clean!
Nobody likes to be sick, yet as a father, if my kids get sick, I’d trade places with them in a heartbeat. Of course, that’s not possible, and there’s no way to completely prevent my kids from getting sick, but one of the most important things I can teach them is proper hand washing.
According to the CDC, hand washing education in the community:
o Reduces the number of people who get sick with diarrhea by 31%
o Reduces diarrheal illness in people with weakened immune systems by 58%
o Reduces respiratory illnesses, like colds, in the general population by 16-21%
Those statistics should command our attention. However, there’s another impressive result from proper hand washing. In that same CDC web page I linked to above, it says that “Reducing the number of these infections by washing hands frequently helps prevent the overuse of antibiotics—the single most important factor leading to antibiotic resistance around the world.”
In light of this information, when should you wash your hands? According to the CDC (Link):
o Before, during, and after preparing food
o Before eating food
o Before and after caring for someone who is sick
o Before and after treating a cut or wound
o After using the toilet
o After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
o After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
o After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
o After handling pet food or pet treats
o After touching garbage
How you wash your hands is just as important. Simply immersing your hands under running water isn’t likely to accomplish much. No, you need to lather them up with soap and scrub for at least 20 seconds. Rub the front, the back, in between fingers, and under your nails. Rinse in clean, running water, not in a sink full of the same water you washed with. Dry them with a clean towel or air dry.
In addition to hand washing, another essential preventive measure your family can take is using a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
My household has used Purell for years. Purell Advanced Hand Sanitizer is formulated to kill 99.99% of germs that may cause illness and is trusted by more leading hospitals than any other brand. Using it is simple too! All you need to do is apply a dime-sized amount of hand sanitizer, or enough to cover all surfaces of your hands, and rub it in until your hands are dry. It only takes about 15 seconds!
If you don’t have access to soap and water, using Purell on the go is the best way to kill germs. New Healthy Soap products by Purell, launched in 2017, not only remove dirt and germs, but they also have natural moisturizers to keep our hands healthy and clean. Of course, be sure to supervise your kids when they use a hand sanitizer!
Health experts have reported that more than 80% of illnesses can be transferred by the hands. Do all you can to protect yourself and your little ones by keeping those hands washed and sanitized!
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