Are you properly washing your hands?

KELOLAND.com Original
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Whether it’s the common cold, the flu or the new coronavirus, washing your hands is one of the best preventative measures you can do to help thwart off any illness.

Dr. Wendell Hoffman is an infectious disease doctor for Sanford Health. He says it’s important to always have hand sanitizer with you, but there’s no evidence that hand sanitizer is better than soap and water.

Hoffman also says following these steps is the best way to wash your hands.

“Getting your hands a little wet, then you use your soap and you scrub your hands. The data suggests about 20 seconds. You can sing the happy birthday song twice and that’ll cover it,” he said.

“After you’ve sung the happy birthday song in your head, then you rinse and then what’s important is you don’t just walk out. You dry your hands with a clean towel because drying is very important too,” he continued.

“All of these steps make it much more likely that the organisms, bacteria, viruses etc. will be washed away down the sink,” Hoffman said.

If you’re not a fan of the birthday song, here’s some others you can sing while washing your hands.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also has some handwashing tips.

Dr. Hoffman also gave some other examples of when to wash your hands.

  • Before going to church and after
  • Before going to another person’s house and after
  • Before going to a family gathering and after
  • Before going to a sports event and after

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