The number one way to protect yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19 is to practice social distancing. However, it’s important that you keep your hands clean as well, even if you’re limiting your exposure to others. Regular hand hygiene plays a key role in preventing sicknesses like the common cold, the flu, and the coronavirus, but it can only keep you healthy if you use the proper techniques! Read on as your Spring Lake dentist shares a few essential tips for keeping your hands clean and germ-free during the COVID-19 pandemic.
How to Effectively Wash Your Hands
The coronavirus won’t be kept at bay by half-hearted hand hygiene! You can still easily get yourself or others sick if you don’t clean your hands thoroughly. Every time you wash your hands, make sure you follow these five basic steps:
- Wet your hands with clean, running water.
- Apply soap and wash every surface of your hands.
- Spend a few extra seconds cleaning your fingertips and under any jewelry.
- After you’ve washed your hands for 60 seconds, gently rinse off the soap with running water.
- Dry your hands completely, preferably with a disposable (paper) towel.
The Most Important Times to Wash Your Hands
There are countless instances in our everyday lives where germs can accumulate on our hands, which is why you should always wash them:
- Before preparing or eating food.
- Before leaving the bathroom.
- After handling animals, pet food, or garbage.
However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, you should also clean your hands:
- After returning from a public place like the grocery store, pharmacy, or gas station.
- Directly after sneezing, coughing, or blowing your nose.
- Before touching your nose, eyes, or mouth, since that’s how germs enter the body.
The Best Time to Use Hand Sanitizer
Health experts report that you should always choose washing your hands with soap and water over using hand sanitizer. However, a hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol can be used as an alternative in situations when you can’t wash your hands. It’s a good idea to bring some with you if you’re going to a public area so you can disinfect your hands right away after coughing, sneezing, or touching a high-traffic item or fixture. Carefully read and follow the instructions printed on the label. Generally, you’ll apply a small amount to one palm then rub it all over both hands for 20 seconds. Remember, hand sanitizer can’t replace regular handwashing!
Now more than ever, it’s critical that everyone does their part to keep themselves healthy and their hands clean. Remember these simple yet effective hand hygiene tips to fend off germs during the pandemic as well as long afterwards!
About the Practice
At Dooley Dental, nothing is more important than the wellbeing of our patients, staff, and the community of Spring Lake, NJ. Now more than ever, we encourage everyone to practice excellent hand hygiene and a thorough daily dental routine. After careful consideration, we have added 25 additional safety precautions to ensure you are as safe as possible should you need to come in for care during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you’d like to learn more about our Commitment to Safety, we can be contacted via our website or at (732) 974-2288.