So, by now, we are sure that you are aware of the importance of handwashing in our fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. Regular, consistent washing of the hands is key in preventing the spread of the virus. But why do we hear so much about the 20-second rule?
For many years, we have known that good hand washing habits help to curb the spread of viruses and infections. From the common cold to diarrhoea, cleaning the hands reduces the risk of spreading by touch, something that we do with our hands all the time. Opening doors, touching the face and shaking hands are just a very small example of just how easily germs can spread and
transmit disease and illness.
Washing the hands for 20 seconds, or for as long as it takes to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ twice, ensures that your hands are thoroughly clean, as long as washing is carried out in the correct manner.
Here is the recommended way of achieving hands that are clean of dirt and germs.
Start by wetting the hands followed by adding enough soap to cover the handarea. Rub together to create a lather all over, then place one hand over the other and use the top hand to clean in between the fingers of the lower hand. Repeat with the opposite hand.
Rub together concentrating on the finger surfaces and in-between again, then rub the backs of the fingers against the palms. This ensures the palms don’t just get a surface clean.
Next concentrate on cleaning the thumbs before giving the whole hand and finger area another through clean and rub.
Rinse well with clean water and dry with a disposable towel.
Do this after using the toilet, before and after eating and preparing food, after touching pets, after sneezing and coughing and as soon as you enter the house as a minimum.