Frequent and proper handwashing is the key to killing germs and preventing the spread of colds and the flu. You might already know that, but do you really know the right way to wash your hands? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, here’s how:
1. Wash your hands with warm running water and soap.
2. Rub your hands together for at least 20 seconds (as long as it takes to sing once through the ABCs or Happy Birthday).
3. Be sure to wash your wrists, the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your fingernails.
4. Leave the water running while you dry your hands on a paper towel.
5. Protect your hands with the paper towel while you turn off the water. This will prevent your clean hands from touching the faucet – a potential source of germs.
When soap and water aren’t available, gel sanitizers or wipes containing 60-90 percent ethyl alcohol or isopropanol are the next best thing. Keep these in your car, purse or desk. Using a dime-size amount of gel, rub your hands together, covering all surfaces of the skin and nails, until the gel is dry.