I have always been a stickler for proper hygiene and hand washing but with the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic, the importance of hand washing has reached a new level!
Why Use Soap?
Hand washing with soap allows the microorganisms on your skin to be surrounded. The specific parts of soap molecules can insert themselves into the lipid component of certain viruses and microbes called the “envelope” and destabilize them.
The envelope is a structure that allows the virus to insert themselves into human cells.
The soap will destroy the important proteins of the bacteria and viruses that usually allow them to live.
The new coronavirus has spiky proteins that attach to a membrane (envelope) that protects the genetic material. The goal of soap is to dissolve the envelope and make it INACTIVE.
The ruptured fragments from the virus will be tapped into tiny bubble structures called micelles which will then spill into the water and make them inactive.
We should be washing our hands for at least 20 seconds.
The CDC recommends these steps:
Remember to scrub the palms together, scrub the back of the hands, in between the fingers and the thumbs. Don’t forget to scrub under the fingernails!
We have all seen by now @Gloria Gaynor’s wonderful fun TikTok video of making hand-washing fun by singing her iconic song “I Will Survive”! I have been singing along as well!
Even after this pandemic hopefully reaches a positive resolution, PLEASE CONTINUE THIS PRACTICE going forward!
WHAT ABOUT HAND SANITIZERS?
Soap and Water are still the best!
Washing your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds is the BEST WAY to fight germs and microbes.
It is the best way to prevent infections however if not available using a hand sanitizer is a viable option in some cases.
If soap and water are available to you do not substitute for hand sanitizer. If your hands are extremely dirty or soiled from food handling (chicken and meat), or chemicals, using the restroom, and exercising hand sanitizer should not be used.
Some common mistakes when using hand sanitizer are:
- Not reading the label, the sanitizer should contain at least 60% alcohol or more according to CDC recommendations.
- Sanitizer should be applied, to both hands, nails, thumbs, everywhere that would be washed with soap and water.
- Air dry your hands do not wipe your hands with a towel after using sanitizer.
- Allow time for hand sanitizer to work before touching your face.
- Moisturize after using hand sanitizer since it causes more dryness.
- Use a clean disposable tissue to touch the bottle once you have sanitized your hands.
SO KEEP WASHING THOSE HANDS BUT ALSO KEEP HAND SANITIZER WITH YOU AS WELL AND USE IT PROPERLY!!