The advent of coronavirus shook us all in the year 2020. As we move onto 2021, we hope to get out of this situation and return to normalcy as we did before. The year 2020 taught us that whether it is a global pandemic or an outbreak, hand hygiene is our first and best line of defence.
The deadly impact of coronavirus hasn’t slowed down yet. To track the global coronavirus outbreak, an estimated 250 million people are infected worldwide, and as scary as it sounds, 1.75 million of them are dead. (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-51235105)
In this blog, we are going to cover some methods and practices we can follow, to stay protected not only in 2021 but throughout our lives.
So here is our guide to hand hygiene in 2021
The Approach Towards Hand Hygiene
Hand Hygiene practices have been around for centuries. Right from our childhood days, the importance of hand hygiene has imbibed upon us. But over the years, most of us ignored these basic practices with the pretext of saving time.
In recent years, most of us have ignored the importance of soaps when we are outside. We wash our hands with just water assuming that it solves the problem.
It is a deep-rooted myth that washing hands with mere water cleanses germs off.
Let us discuss when, how, why you should practice hygiene?
Hygiene in 2021
The world has witnessed the new normal, with a Sanitizer in its pocket, with the compulsory mask on, keeping social distancing. The germs around us are transmitted. Feasibly, washing hands is the only way we can restrict them.
Why wash hands?
Ironically, handwashing rates are higher during days than during the evening time.
Whether you are a housewife or a working professional, or a college student, handwashing with a general soap is the method recommended by World Health Organisations (WHO).
When to wash hands?
It is a popular misconception to wash hands only before meal intake. It is safe to wash hands before you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, before cooking and before eating the meal too. Failing to wash hands properly results in foodborne illness.
Washing hands every time you come across a risky surface has far-reaching effects. In your home, the toilet seat is one of the known germiest places. Shockingly, doorknobs, pet bowls, toothbrush holders, kitchen counters, toddler’s toys have more germs than the toilet seat.
Cleaning them periodically is the only great escape.
A proper way to wash hands.
According to the World Health Organisation’s guidelines, washing hands for 20 seconds, is sufficient to wipe away most germs and viruses.
It is equivalent to singing a happy birthday song.
How to wash hands effectively?
Viruses and germs are unseen to the bare eyes. But they are growing in your cells. Skin’s moist heat caters bacterias to grow.
General soap itself kills several bacterias. The friction produced by physical rubbing strokes off the dead germs. And when you dry your hands, you get rid of them even better.
It is essential to wipe hands, as much as it is to wash them.
It is another common myth that hot water wipes off germs better. It is scientifically-proven that washing hands with cold or lukewarm water is enough to kill the germs.
Hand Sanitizers: A timesaving approach to hand hygiene.
The hygiene industry produced a pocket-friendly hygiene solution. Due to its quick and effective usefulness against germs, usage of sanitizer is advantageous. Increasing hygiene awareness has accelerated the use of sanitizers among the population.
When to use Sanitizer?
While travelling or commuting to the office, water and sink are unavailable. Even if you get access to the sink and water, finding a soap bar is another issue. It is when sanitizer comes to rescue.
Although, repeated use of sanitizers will dry out your skin. FDA recommends using sanitizer only when there is no other source available.
Facts to know about sanitizer.
- Consumers frequently ask if it is suitable to eat after you apply sanitizer. sanitizers contain strong chemicals. Repeated ingestion can affect the immune system. Direct sanitizer ingestion can cause severe illness and even can lead to death.
- The presence of alcohol in the sanitizer kills germs but is flammable and can cause severe damage. It is dangerous to cover hands with Sanitizer and be present around the fire. Even a little amount of sanitizer can cause a fire hazard.
- Not all sanitizers are skin-friendly. With the markets flooded with Sanitizers, choose the one that has 60% alcohol.
From home to office to cafeteria to shopping malls, hand hygiene is everybody’s welcome song. Reportedly, reminder signs have been a successful attempt to insist on people to wash their hands.
We find sanitizer stations outside every office and shops. Clean hands should be the ticket to every entry.
2021: A commitment to hand hygiene.
Whether we get the absolute antidote or not, 2020 has reminded us of an unforgettable hygiene lesson.
As the intensity of germs and viruses is presumed to intensify, it is smarter to make hand hygiene a commitment.
In 2021, we don’t know what lies before us. Let us assure to stay safe and germ-free and maintain social distancing, so long as hand hygiene is concerned. Make your life better with hand hygiene.