Handwashing effective way to stop spread of germs

From NMMC-Eupora

Handwashing is easy to do and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of many types of infection and illness in all settings—from your home and workplace to child care facilities and hospitals. When should you wash your hands? • Before, during and after preparing food • Before eating food • Before and after caring for someone who is sick • Before and after treating a cut or wound • After using the toilet • After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet • After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing • After touching an animal, animal feed or animal waste • After touching garbage What is the right way to wash your hands? • Wet your hands with clean running water (warm or cold) and apply soap. • Rub your hands together to make a lather and scrub them well; be sure to scrub the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails. • Continue rubbing your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice. • Rinse your hands well under running water. • Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry. Washing hands with soap and water is the best way to reduce the number of germs on them. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of germs on hands in some situations, but sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs. Stephanie McIlwain, RN, MSN and Stephanie Galloway, RN, BSN visited the 2-year-old class at Webster Care to discuss handwashing and the importance of it with the children. The children were involved in hands-on activities where they went on a “germ” hunt to show that germs are everywhere so it is very important to wash your hands! If you would like for this class to be taught in your childcare center or school, call the education department at North Mississippi Medical Center-Eupora AT 258-9311.