1. Turn on the water and get your hands wet. This helps you to spread the soap more easily.
2. Get plenty of soap. Usually, two to three squirts of liquid soap are enough.
3. Rub your hands together to work up to a really good lather. As you’re doing this, make sure you get all parts of your hands, not just the palms. This means interlacing your fingers to get between them, scrubbing the backs of your hands, get underneath your fingernails and around both thumbs. You should rub your hands together for at least 20 seconds, or the length of time it takes to sing or hum ‘Happy Birthday’ twice.
4. Once you’re done scrubbing, rinse your hands under the running water.
5. Dry your hands with a paper towel and use it to turn off the water (if it’s not automatic). If you’re in a public bathroom, use the paper towel to open the door. By doing both of these, you’ll help to prevent your hands from being contaminated. It’s important to note that air dryers can actually spread germs throughout the room because it blows the air around, which stirs up germs.
The next thing that is essential is the frequency of your handwashing. You should wash your hands if they’re visibly dirty, after going to the bathroom, before and after preparing or cooking food and after you sneeze or cough. You should also wash your hands anytime that they feel dirty.
While washing with soap and water is the best way to clean your hands, you don’t always have access to them. In situations like this, it’s a good idea to use alcohol-based hand sanitizer. The key is that it’s at least 60% alcohol.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) handwashing poster has been provided for easy reference. Please feel free to download and/or print it. Then, you can place it in the bathroom to use it as a reminder of the proper steps. By thoroughly and frequently washing your hands, you’ll be doing your part to reduce the spread of COVID-19!