Why is Proper Handwashing the Best Way to Stay Healthy?


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Why is Proper Handwashing the Best Way to Stay Healthy?

Flu season is upon us. Kids are in school in many areas and bringing home a variety of viruses like the common cold, the flu, and strep throat. Ideally, you want to avoid those viruses making it into your parents' house. One of the best ways to stop a virus is through handwashing.

October 15th is Global Handwashing Day. It's a good time to learn why handwashing is the most important step in disease prevention and how to properly wash your hands.

Why Is Handwashing so Important?

Studies have found that proper handwashing reduces the risk of respiratory infections by close to 20 percent. Some UK researchers believe that if everyone took time to properly wash their hands after greeting others, using a keypad or doorknob, or using a restroom, a million deaths per year could be prevented.

When classrooms in a study started using alcohol gel sanitizers in each classroom, student absenteeism dropped by close to 20 percent. Washing hands is best, but gel sanitizers are a good alternative if washing hands isn't possible at that moment.

Gel sanitizers have to be used properly. You need enough to thoroughly saturate the palms, under the nails, the back of the hands, and between the fingers. The sanitizer needs to be at least 60 percent alcohol and not be on the CDC list of hand sanitizer recalls that contained toxic ingredients.

The Eight-Step Guide to Properly Washing Hands

There are eight steps involved in properly washing the hands.

  • Rinse the hands in warm water.
  • Apply hand soap or pick up a bar of soap.
  • Lather the two hands together so that the suds have thoroughly covered both palms to the wrist. Do this for a count of 10.
  • Lather the backs of the hands for a count of 10.
  • Lather between the fingers for a count of 10.
  • Lather under the nails for a count of 10.
  • Rinse and get a clean towel to dry both hands or let them air dry.
  • Apply moisturizer to prevent dryness.

If your parents end up with a bad cold or flu, who is helping them out? Your parents shouldn't have to focus on cooking meals and doing the laundry when they should be in bed. Home care services can take over daily housekeeping chores while they rest and heal. Talk to a home care agency about temporary respite care services.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering home care in Englewood, CO, please contact the caring staff at SYNERGY HomeCare today. Call us at (303) 756-9322.​​

Tom Yetzer
Tom Yetzer

Tom is the owner of SYNERGY HomeCare of Denver, Colorado.

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