by Yen Express
Jul 11, 2020
Prior to COVID -19 regular hand washing is rarely practiced. We find it very easy to grab a bite from any fruit without necessarily washing it. We clean our faces, eyes and even remove substances from our mouth using our hands caring-less about the places we have been to, things we have touched or people we have shook hands with. It was a period when everyone sings ‘Disease no dey kill African man’, but how true is this? Looking at the recent rate at which Africa is being hit by the COVID-19 and other germs related diseases. Most of these diseases are caused when germs come in contact with our hands and into our body through our eyes, nose and mouth.
Hand washing helps you to be healthy and also the people around you. It help reduce the number of people who get sick with diarrhea by 23-40% and respiratory illnesses like cold in the general population by 16-21%. It reduces the rate of school absenteeism due to gastrointestinal illness in school children by 29-57%. Generally diarrhea diseases and pneumonia are the top two killers of children world wide due to poor hand hygiene.
So it is very important to ensure that we wash our hands always.
STEPS OF HAND WASHING
NHS advised the use of seven steps in washing of hands and that would make the hand clean. Which is to last 20 seconds involving the following steps
Wet your hands and apply enough soap to create a good lather. The water should be between warm .
- Rub your palms in a circular motion, clockwise and anticlockwise.
- Rub the back of your hands with your fingers linked through the other hand, use your right palm to rub the back of your left hand. Then swap.
- Interlink your fingers together, facing each other, into clasped hands. Then tub your palms and fingers together.
- Cup your fingers together, with your right hand over your left hand under. With your fingers interlocked rub the backs of them against your palms then swap.
- Clean the the thumb by enclosing the right hand around your left thumb and rub as you rotate it, then swap.
- Rub your fingers over your left palm in a circular motion, then swap.
W.H.O. suggested that washing your hands should last as long as singing ‘happy birthday twice.’ After which you rinse and dry your hands with a clean towel. (WET, LATHER, SCRUB using the steps above 2-7, RINSE AND DRY- CDC )
WHEN TO WASH YOUR HANDS
Regular hand washing is one of the best ways to remove germs and avoid getting sick where ever you may be, either at work, travelling or out in the community. The under-listed are moments when you have close contact with germs and it increases our chances of getting infected with various forms of diseases;
During the COVID-19 pandemic you are to wash your hands after you have been in public places and have touched item or surfaces that maybe frequently touched by others e.g door handles, tables,gas pumps etc
Before touching your eyes, nose or mouth for they serve as major route of germ entry into our bodies.
Before, during and after preparing food, before eating food
Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea
Before and after treating a cut or wound
After using the toilet, changing diapers or cleaning up a child that has used the toilet.
After sneezing, coughing or blowing your nose
After touching animal feed,waste or an animal or pet and after touching garbage.
Regular hand washing is one of the best ways to remove germs,avoid getting sick and prevent the spreading it to others.
USE ALCOHOL BASED HAND SANITIZER WHEN YOU CAN’T USE SOAP AND WATER