The Trick to Preventing Illness? Wash Your Hands!
By Sara Butler
The secret to good health isn't some strange tropical fruit you've never heard of or even a vitamin that helps to keep your immune system strong. No, the real secret to good health? Handwashing. Yes, that's right, washing your hands can prevent many different types of illnesses and disease. The next time you're thinking about skipping a good washing, think about the illnesses you could avoid.
Why It's So Important
So, why is washing your hands so incredibly important? Well, it's because your hands are dirty. They touch people, places, and things that can put in you in contact with different viruses, bacteria, germs, and other nasty bugs that can make you ill. If these things get on your hands, then they'll get on your nose, eyes, or mouth when you touch your face and then make a beeline right into your body. Plus, you use your hands to prepare food and eat, which can also introduce things into your body.
If you can wash your hands regularly, especially before you eat, then you can help to reduce illnesses.
Are You Doing it Wrong?
Believe it or not, there is a right way and a wrong way to wash your hands. The right way is to use soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, making sure to get it between the fingers and on the back of your hands. Don't turn off the tap right after you're done either since you just touched that with your dirty hands to turn it on. Instead, use a towel to turn off the tap.
So, what kinds of illnesses can you prevent with a little handwashing? You can prevent:
- Norovirus - This gastrointestinal bug can make for a miserable existence for a few days
- The flu - The flu can kill people, so it's not something to take lightly
- Pink eye - Itchy, gooey eyes are not fun and can be avoided with handwashing
- Salmonellosis - You're touching more poop particles than you realize, which is how salmonella can get passed around easily
- Mono - Infectious mononucleosis isn't just a kissing disease, it's also a disease that you can catch from touching something that someone has sneezed or coughed on
- Hand-foot-and-mouth disease - This virus causes sores on the mouth and in the throat as well as a rash on the feet and hands
Make sure to wash your hands several times per day to help you stay healthy!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Columbus, Ohio.