As per several researches conducted by international science forums, the proper drying of hands after a good wash is a must and could be very vital in staying away from infections and viral diseases.
On wet skin, the transmission of microorganisms and bacteria is more likely to occur. Even in this current pandemic situation, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has advised everyone to regularly and thoroughly clean their hands. And this can either be done with an alcohol-based hand sanitiser or with soap and water.
Effective washing of hands is thought to be done with clean water and soap, rubbed together for at least 20 seconds, followed by rinsing. The use of 70% and above alcohol, glycerine and gel-based sanitizers is particularly important for hand washing to be more effective than soap as research has shown that washing with sanitizers significantly reduces the presence of microbes (viruses and bacteria) on hands. The one basic point of staying protected which is usually neglected and under looked is the process of Drying your hands.
It may be often considered as a secondary requirement, yet most of us are unaware that drying wet hands is important to keep out bacteria and contamination at bay from our hands. The process of drying hands right after washing is mainly critical because if your hands remain damp, they can spread 1,000 times more bacteria than dry hands!!
More reasons of why you should dry your hands clean:
- Proper hand hygiene minimises respiratory infections by 16%. This includes washing your hands with Sanitizers or soap and water, then drying it completely.
- Not just Corona, Influenza virus survives on hands and surfaces for up to 48 hours.
- According to research, there can be around 1,000 and more bacteria residing per cm2 on your hand; Our single hand may carry a population count of over 200 million bacteria, per square inch.
- Bacteria like E.Coli multiply its population every 20 minutes and stay alive in your hands for up to 3 hours.
Remember, washing hands is important. Drying hands after washing is equally important. It only takes seconds for your hands to be contaminated. Learn the correct way to wash your hands effectively with this 8 steps hand washing label.
Stop the Urge!! Don’t wash too much
It's important to keep your hands clean so you can prevent illness and the spread of germs. But possibly, washing your hands too much with soap and water may have its adverse effects. If you have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) or suffer from anxiety, you may feel the need to constantly wash your hands, even if you've just washed them and haven't done anything to contaminate them and often wash their hands repeatedly until they are chapped, raw and sometimes even bleeding." Ouch! If you feel obsessed with hand washing and you constantly feel the urge to grab the soap, avoid it and choose good gel-based sanitizer.
Dry them Right!
Drying hands with a hot air dryer and towels are problematic in hospitals. It can increase the risk of particles as well as microorganism dispersion in air and can contaminate the environment. Cloth roller towels, too, are not recommended as normal use of towels can further contaminate the hands when a person dries them next time, thus acting a source of pathogen transmission. For this, the best way to dry hands after cleaning are disposable paper towels. It is advisable for those who are visiting hospitals be it staff, patient or a visitor. The report said that usage of paper towel is the quickest and efficient method that will help remove residual moisture. And if there is no moisture, there are no germs. Avoid damp, keep your hands dry and stay safe and protected.