misc image

The Importance of Handwashing

Dec 19, 2022

The Importance of Handwashing
While there are many ways you can stop the spread of germs this cold and flu season, handwashing is the best method of prevention. We explain its importance here.

Handwashing and proper hand hygiene are the number one way to prevent the spread of germs and disease.

Respiratory infections like RSV, COVID, Influenza and Gastrointestinal infections, can easily be spread from person to person or from a surface.  

Hand washing protects yourself, your family and those with weakened immune systems from becoming seriously ill.

During cold and flu season, it’s especially important to stick to a strict hand washing routine. Our team at Catalyst Medical Group has tips and tricks to keep you healthy and keep the germs at bay.

How to wash your hands

It’s best to wash your hands with both soap and water. Water on its own isn’t effective at fighting germs. 

Here are helpful step-by-step instructions on the best way to wash your hands:

  1. Rinse your hands with water at a comfortable temperature
  2. Apply soap to your hands, and work it up in a lather
  3. Work the lather all over your hands and wrists, in between your fingers and fingernails for at least 30 seconds. Teach your kids to sing “Happy Birthday” while doing this. When the song is over, they are done. 
  4. Wash off the soap, and dry your hands thoroughly. Make sure you change out the fabric towel in your kitchen or bathroom, daily.  

If you wash your hands in a public place, use your elbow or a paper towel to turn off the faucet.

When to wash your hands

Wash your hands often every single day in addition to washing them after doing any of these activities:

  • Touching high-traffic surfaces
  • Eating and drinking
  • Using the restroom
  • Blowing your nose or sneezing
  • Handling garbage

You should also wash your hands after interacting with pets or places with large amounts of people like public transportation.

Hand sanitizer gel or wipes are a viable option to use if water and soap aren’t readily available.

The bottom line

Because handwashing is the absolute best way to prevent the spread of germs and illnesses, it’s of utmost importance to make it a top priority for you and your family this cold and flu season. 

In case you find yourself sick after hours, on the weekends or you can’t get into your primary care provider, we offer express care for quality treatment of your illness. You aren’t required to have a provider here, to be seen in any of our departments. 

If you’d like to learn about more ways you can slow down the spreading of sickness, contact our team today at one of our Catalyst Medical Group offices located in Lewiston, Idaho.