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Flu Season Tip: Wash Your Hands

Oct 01, 2018

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October 1st is here! But before you get that fall feeling, make sure you protect yourself against the flu feeling, too. 

October officially marks the beginning of the flu season. While influenza viruses are detected all year-round in the U.S., flu activity often begins to increase in the fall. Viruses that cause a common cold and the flu can spread easily. Shaking hands, opening a door and even petting an animal can result in germ-filled hands. In fact, 80% of germs and viruses are spread by your hands. By touching your eyes, nose and mouth you can infect yourself.

But don’t worry – there’s an easy way to combat these germs. It starts with washing your hands.

Samuel N. Grief, MD, an associate professor of clinical family medicine at the University of Illinois in Chicago, says “Hand washing is the best way to prevent colds and other respiratory and infectious diseases that are transmitted by hand to mouth or hand to nose and eye contact…soap acts as a vehicle to trap the germs that are loosened by the act of rubbing your hands together under water. These germs can then be rinsed away by the water."

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Wash Your Hands the Right Way

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends a six step process for washing hands. It only takes 20 seconds and is one of the best proactive methods to disinfecting your hands to stop the spread of germs and viruses.

Here’s how to wash your hands the right way:

  • Wet your hands with clean, running water, turn off the tap, and apply soap.
  • Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Be sure to clean all surfaces on your hands (backs of your hands, between your fingers, under your nails, etc).
  • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.
  • Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
  • Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
The most important part to remember is to scrub your hands for 20 seconds – this is proven to trap the germs and wash them right down the drain! By using this model for hand hygiene, you can protect yourself and others from the spread of germs.

Don't Spread Germs and Viruses to Others

Want to improve hand hygiene in your workplace? Implement the Compass Program from Betco®. Compass is the only program that guides users to proper hand hygiene as recommended by the CDC. Click here to learn more.

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