So all of a sudden, we’ve plunged into bad (and scary) times. Within a span of 5 months, we went from recording coronavirus infections from China to the rest of the world. Experts say that one of the best ways to protect yourself and your loved ones is to wash your hands with soap and water whenever possible. But if soap and water are not available, a hand sanitizer will at least help reduce the risks of COVID-19 transmission in the community. Here is a guide for effective hand sanitizer use./
1. You Should Use Alcohol Based Hand Sanitizers
The effective concentration of an alcohol sanitizer is 60% and above. Sanitizers with lower alcohol concentrations, or non-alcohol sanitizers may merely reduce the growth of germs but not kill them.
2. They Do Not Eliminate All Types Of Germs
Soap and water are still the most effective at removing some types of germs, such as Clostridium difficile, norovirus. While alcohol-based hand sanitizers can be effective as well, most people may not use a large enough amount.
3.There Is A Way To Rub Hand Sanitizers Into Your Hands
You first need to apply the correct amount to the palm of one hand, and rub the product all over the surfaces (front and back) of your hands and wait for them to become dry.
4. They Don’t Work Well If Your Hands Are Visibly Dirty
Got dirt or mud on your hands? Rubbing hand sanitizers in will create a mess. Why? They are not meant for removing dirt, only killing bacteria and viruses. So if your hands need to be cleaned of gunk, you still need to find the good old soap and water.
5. The More You Use It, The More Your Skin Doesn’t Like It
If you have been using it correctly, high concentration alcohol-based hand sanitizers will usually irritate or dry out the skin. Look for alcohol-based hand sanitizers which come with moisturizing ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid. And use the hand sanitizer immediately after possible contamination occurs. Wash your hands with soap and water if possible after about 10 hand sanitizer uses.
6. Soap And Water Are Best After The Bathroom
The best option after you have been to the bathroom, changed a dirty diaper etc. is soap and water. Use a hand sanitizer only if you have no access to these.
7. Alcohol Based Hand Sanitizers Can Cause Alcohol Poisoning If Consumed
Whisky contains typically 40% alcohol, so if you drink your alcohol-based hand sanitizer (hopefully by accident and not by choice), you can get drunk, and even alcohol poisoning from it. This is also why they should be kept out of reach of young children who might accidentally consume it.
These are difficult times, but as long as we all stay at home, remember to wash or sanitize our hands and not touch our faces when we are out and can’t be at home, this too, will pass!