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As cold and flu season approaches, it’s important to remember a simple, easy and effective way to prevent spreading germs and to help yourself and others stay healthy: washing your hands with soap and water.
Whether it’s at your home or office, having clean hands can help stop the spread of germs in a community, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It notes that in a hospital, health care providers who practice proper hand hygiene can help prevent infections. But did you know that there’s a right way to wash your hands? The CDC suggests these five steps:
The CDC recommends that you wash your hands often, particularly when you might get germs on your hands:
When soap and water aren’t immediately available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, you should closely supervise young children when using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer to keep them from accidentally swallowing it, which can cause alcohol poisoning. The CDC notes that these sanitizers don’t rid your hands of all germs. If your hands are greasy or have visible dirt, it’s best to wash with soap and water.