We have a virus on our hands that has now entered the United States. There is not a lot of information about the Coronavirus but there are ways to limit the spread of germs and protect yourselves and others.
1. Wash Your Hands To Limit The Spread Of Germs
- CDC recommends washing your hands for 20 seconds. I always hear, “sing the happy birthday song twice”. That does make it easier to know how long to wash your hands. We have a sign in our long term care facility that states this.
- Germ-X has been said to not work as well as washing your hands but when there isn’t a sink around, it is better than nothing! Of course right now hand sanitizer is almost sold out everywhere.
- Tip: Make sure to wash your hands the right way. You can make a difference in the spreading of germs. You can reference the chart above to ensure you wash your hands properly. You can find more about proper handwashing techniques here.
2. Sanitize Surfaces
- One surface that I don’t even think about that has tons of germs is my phone. Our phones go everywhere with us. You open a door to enter a store and someone calls you so you pull your phone out to answer it . . . what kind of germs were on that door handle or on the cart you just grabbed? Now you just transferred all of those germs to your phone that goes everywhere with you. Definitely wipe down your phone with a disinfectant wipe!
- Sanitize commonly touched surfaces at home like countertops, door handles, sink handles, light switches, and television remotes.
- Sanitize commonly touched surfaces at work like office desks, light switches, telephones, keyboards, and in my case therapy equipment.
3. Cover Your Coughs & Sneezes
- Cough or sneeze in your elbow
- Cough or sneeze in a tissue
- Wash your hands immediately after!
4. Avoid sharing personal household items
- I know this should be common sense but do not share eating utensils, dishes, drinkware, towels, and bedding. These personal items are close to your mouth, nose, and hands which carries a majority of your germs.
5. Quit Touching Your Face! Germs Are All Over Your Hands!
- You don’t realize how much you actually touch your face in a day until you start keeping track of it. On a daily basis I move my bangs out of my face, wipe my eyes, and scratch my nose. This is the easiest way for germs to enter the body. It is something we do everyday with no knowledge of it but it is something we have to stop doing to keep us healthy.
Overall, the most effective method of stopping the spread of germs is to wash your hands. The less germs you have on your hands = the less germs that you put onto surfaces.