SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — In addition to wearing masks for protection against COVID-19, some people may be wearing gloves.
Hospital workers wear gloves often while taking care of patients.
But Dr. Dan Heinemann says if you’re not working in health care, wearing gloves isn’t always necessary.
“I see a lot of clerical staff and businesses with gloves on. It really kind of creates a problem in that you’re not washing your hands frequently,” Heinemann said.
This results in a higher chance that you’re spreading germs from person to person.
Instead of wearing gloves while out and about, he says washing your hands often will do the trick.
“I think you can do a better job of protecting yourself and others by frequently washing your hands or frequently using some hand sanitizer cause the glove could get… you could be spreading things because you think you’re protecting somebody when you’re really not,” Heinemann said.
But that doesn’t mean there isn’t a time when gloves can be useful. Instead of putting them on for daily tasks, he suggest using them for two specific circumstances.
“So two times you should wear your gloves. Cleaning and when you’re taking care of somebody. All other times you do not need to use your gloves,” Heinemann said.
He says gloves can protect your skin from harsh chemicals while cleaning, in addition to protecting you while caring for someone who is sick.
And once you get them on, it’s also important to know how to get them off properly.
“So many people contaminate themselves when they take their contaminated gloves off. So I start by grabbing this glove notice I’m not touching my hand or my skin. I pull it off. I put it in this hand. Now I go inside this glove, so I’m not touching the outside of the glove. I’m pulling the glove off. So I’ve now got the inside to the outside,” Heinemann said.
And once they’re off, make sure to wash your hands in case anything punctured the glove while you were wearing them.
“I’m not saying that gloves at home are not a good idea, but use them in the proper way,” Heinemann said.
Dr. Heinemann adds that in addition to using gloves properly, it’s also important to wear a mask while out in public.