Do You Wash and Dry Your Hands Wrong?
By Randi Morse
We have been taught that in order to stay healthy, we need to wash our hands regularly throughout the day. You should wash your hands after you've gone to the bathroom, before you touch or eat any food, and you should wash your hands anytime you've been around a sick person. It is important to make sure that you know how to wash your hands properly as there can be many nasty bugs that hitch a ride on your hands just waiting for the opportune moment to invade your system. These include bugs like:
The average person washes their hands for six seconds. There's also a large number of people who do the "rinse and shake" technique, where they simply run their hands underwater for a few seconds and then shake them dry. Let's get one thing very clear: rinsing off your hands without using any soap is pretty much useless. It is the soap that gets rid of the bacteria. It may surprise you to know that the soap does not kill the bacteria, instead it gives the bacteria something to cling onto that you can then rinse off your body. Also, six seconds is nowhere near long enough time to wash your hands. If you're looking to get rid of viruses and bacteria, you need to wash your hands for at least 30 seconds, which is something that the average person doesn't do.
Drying Your Hands
Getting your hands dry is also important, but what is the best way to dry them? There has always been a great deal of debate about whether it's better to towel dry your hands or use a hand dryer. The truth is that there is no conclusive evidence that proves either way is better than the other. What is important is simply making sure your hands are thoroughly dry. It has been found that 85 percent of microbes are transmitted simply by having hands that are not thoroughly dry. This is because any bacteria that was missed during your washing generally gets removed during the drying. Those air dryers you find in many public restrooms? They are great because they allow you to dry your hands without touching anything, the problem is most people don't thoroughly dry their hands which leaves them with moist, potentially contaminated hands.
The next time you wash your hands, especially during cold and flu season, make sure you take the time to thoroughly wash and dry your hands. This will greatly cut down on the possibility of getting infected by virus or bacteria.
To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in San Diego, Calif.