It may seem like a simple act, but hand washing is not a practice that needs attention only in the pandemic of the new coronavirus. This is because many pre-existing diseases can be contracted by not washing or improper hand hygiene.
Last Thursday, the date on which World Hand Washing Day was celebrated, the general practitioner at Hapvida Hospital in João Pessoa, Roberta Carneiro (photo), highlighted the importance of this act.
“It is, above all, a matter of hygiene and a way to prevent various infectious diseases. But, mainly, pathologies caused by viruses, as well as intestinal parasites that cause diarrhea ”, he explains.
Throughout the day every individual usually has contact with various people, animals, food and diverse surfaces, in addition to sharing collective environments, such as public transport.
Given this, Roberta Carneiro highlights the moments when hands should be washed.
“We should always wash our hands before meals, after using the bathroom, when we get home before doing any activity like preparing food, taking care of children and the elderly. And always when you notice dirt after doing some activity like taking care of the garden and animals ”, he explains.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), diseases such as diarrhea could be prevented and reduced by up to 40% if all people washed their hands properly.
In a study published in the Journal Of Environmental Health, only 5% of people wash their hands properly. In this way, the doctor guides how to wash your hands effectively.
“It is essential to use running water and soap, rub the palms between the fingers, nails and wrists. Rinse well and dry with a clean, dry towel or paper towel ”, he suggests.
Among the diseases that can be prevented by correct hand washing are Hepatitis A, Rotavirus, Bonchiolitis, Conjunctivitis, Flu, Covid-19. In the case of children, you can also avoid the disease, Hand, Foot and Mouth.
What not to do – Hand washing requires attention and, in this sense, the doctor highlights which are the most common mistakes in hand hygiene. “Use little water, don’t use soap, don’t scrub properly. Use of gel alcohol with dirty hands is also not correct ”, he warns.