During the festive season, you come in contact with more people than usual. Although this can help us expand our circle of friends and acquaintances, it increases your exposure to germs. Bacteria and viruses are easily transmitted by just about everything you touch. As you touch people, surfaces and objects throughout the day, you accumulate germs on your hands. You can infect yourself with these germs by touching your eyes, nose or mouth and you can also spread them to others throughmicroscopic particles that will attack your immune system on a daily basis.
This is the reason why the best line of defense is to wash your hands as often as possible. Although it’s impossible to keep hands completely germ-free, washing your hands frequently is a must when practicing Active Wellness. Hand washing can help limit the transfer of bacteria, viruses and other microbes.
According to NHS UK1, you should always wash your hands when they are visibly dirty and:
- Before and after handling raw foods like meat and vegetables
- Before eating or handling food
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
Always wash your hands after:
- Preparing food
- Using the toilet, changing a nappy or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
- Touching an animal, animal feed or animal waste
- Blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
- Treating wounds or caring for a sick person
- Handling garbage
- Handling pet food or pet treats
According to the Word Health Organisation, the recommended guideline for washing your hands is as long as singing “Happy Birthday” twice.2
Teaching children from a young age to wash hands often is key to preventing the spread of common ailments. The five easy steps are: wet, lather, scrub, rinse and dry.
It’s wise to wash your hands and change your clothes after you get home from work and to wash your hands frequently during the workday. You don’t have to work with soil or anything else produced by Mother Nature to become infested with germs.
Alcohol-based hand sanitisers, which don’t require water, are an acceptable alternative when soap and water aren’t available. If you use a hand sanitiser, make sure the product contains at least 60% alcohol.
This festive season, decrease exposure to germs simply by thoroughly washing your hands often and with soap and enjoy Active Wellness.
9th December 2019