It’s that time of year again, the annual flu season, also known as winter. In addition to getting vaccinated, good hygiene habits can help reduce the spread of germs. Hand washing has been called a “do-it-yourself” vaccine and with only a few simple steps it can prevent and reduce the spread of stomach bugs and other respiratory illnesses. There is extensive research, which shows that people who regularly take part in good hygiene get sick less often. If there’s one thing you should be doing this winter to avoid getting the flu it’s practicing good hand hygiene.
Surprisingly enough some studies show that only 70% of people wash their hands after visiting the bathroom and only 30% of people actually use soap. Believe it or not but there is a proper way to wash your hands and most people are doing it incorrectly.
Along with correct hand washing techniques, there are a few other tips and tricks you can do to prevent flu this season. Here they are:
- ) Wash your hands often
Generally speaking, it’s important to wash your hands:
• After going to the bathroom
• Before, after and during food preparation
• Before eating food
• After touching garbage
• After looking after someone who is sick
• After blowing your nose, sneezing or coughing
• After touching animals or animal food
• After changing diapers
- ) Wash your hands properly
Most people often miss critical areas of the hands. Here are the correct steps to washing your hands.
• Wet your hands thoroughly under the tap, with hot or cold water.
• Soap up your hands by rubbing them together. Get right in-between your fingers, the back of your hands and under your nails.
• Rub, your hands together thoroughly
- ) Cover your mouth and nose
When sneezing or coughing always cover your nose and mouth with a tissue, this will help reduce the spread of germs especially if you are sick. It’s also advised to avoid close contact with people when you’re sick or if someone else around you is sick.
- ) Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
Avoid touching these areas because these are common places that germs can enter your body. Always wash your hands before doing so.
- ) Stay home when you are sick
Staying home when you are sick will help prevent the spread of germs so always do so whenever possible. You body will thank you for the much needed rest and recovery.
- ) Use hand sanitisers
Although washing your hands with water and soap is the best way to reduce the spread of germs, sometimes you might not have access to soap or running water depending on where you are. In such instances opt to use an alcohol-based santiser with at least50% alcohol. A good quality alcohol sanitiser can be efficient at eliminating 99.9% germs. Hand sanitisers are perfect for use during the winter months when we are all more susceptible to colds and flu. Remember to rub the product all over your hands and use regularly to kill germs.
Practicing good hygiene habits is the first step to avoiding flu this winter, with simple practical steps you can avoid getting the winter slumps, prevention is always better than cure. Keep warm, healthy and free of germs this winter.