Sabtu, 06 Oktober 2007

Handwashing for Better Health

Hand sanitizers

– an important member of the teamThe change in routine that September brings offers the perfect opportunity to re-energize your family’s good health habits . . . and frequent handwashing is a good health habit that should get special attention. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it is the single most important practice that will keep us all from getting sick and spreading illness.That’s because people with colds typically carry the virus on their hands, where, unless proper handwashing intervenes, it can stay alive for at least two hours. These live viruses can also be transmitted from hands to other surfaces, such as cafeteria tables, doorknobs, telephone receivers, computer keyboards, toys, games, etc., where they lay and wait for several hours for another set of hands to pick them up.Each year, 22 million school days are lost due to the common cold.
So if your family hasn’t jumped on the Clean Hands Bandwagon, now is the time to get them on board, suggests Nancy Bock, Vice President of Education at The Soap and Detergent Association. Critical times for handwashing include before and after meals and snacks; before and after preparing food, especially raw meat, poultry, or seafood; after using the bathroom; after touching animals; after touching a public surface; when hands are dirty; before caring for young children; and when you or someone around you is ill. moreSeptember/October 2007Web: www.cleaning101.com Email: info@cleaning101.comEnhancing health and quality of life through education.


Shop Smart

No matter how hard you try, some supply shopping is usually necessary. Shopping early is one way to sidestep the crowds. To avoid “buying blind,” check with your school district for a list of supplies. Some school districts and many private schools now post lists of required supplies, by grade level, on their websites prior to the first day of school. Hand Hygiene ProductsHand hygiene products come in many forms – each having its own benefits. Choose the form that best suits your family’s needs and the situation.• Bar soaps: Designed to clean the skin by removing dirt and oils.• Liquid or Foaming Hand Soaps: Designed to dispense a single dose for cleaning hands.• Hand sanitizers: Designed to kill germs on hands that are not visibly dirty, without the need for water or towels.• Hand Wipes: Designed to wipe away dirt from hands.

When soap and water aren’t convenient, hand sanitizers and wipes can fit the bill. In a study conducted by Children’s Hospital Boston, a group of 292 families was divided into two equal-sized groups and tracked for five months. Half of the families were given hand sanitizer, which was found to reduce infectious disease by 59 percent more than in the homes of the other group, who were not given sanitizer. However, when these products are used in places with young children – particularly those under age six – common sense must be observed. Alcohol is a significant ingredient in hand sanitizers and hand wipes. When used according to the manufacturer’s directions, most of the alcohol evaporates into the air, posing no danger to children. However, if a small child ingests the product directly, signs and symptoms of alcohol intoxication could occur.

It’s important to note that these products contain explicit warnings about the dangers they pose and that responsible adults should keep the products out of reach of young explorers. Adult supervision while the product is being used is also important. Proper Handwashing TechniquesBar or hand soaps:1. Wet hands with warm, running water. Then apply soap.2. Rub hands together vigorously to make a lather and scrub all surfaces. Continue for 20 seconds, which is about how long it takes to sing Happy Birthday twice.3. Rinse well under warm, running water.4. Dry hands thoroughly using paper towels or an air dryer. Avoid community hand towels that are repeatedly used by everyone in the family. If possible, use a paper towel to turn off the faucet.Hand sanitizers: Apply one or two squirts of the product to your hands, and then rub them together briskly. Rub the front, the back, between your fingers, and around and under nails until your hands are dry.Hand wipes: Wipe all areas of your hands until they are visibly clean. Depending on how dirty or sticky your hands are, this might require more than one wipe. When finished, dispose of the wipes in an appropriate trash container and let your hands air-dry.Additional sources:Cleaning Matters, Sept./Oct 2004, p. 2http://www.ens-newswire.com ens/sep2005/2005-09-06-09.asp#anchor7

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