by CareNow

washing hands properly is by far the best way to prevent them from getting sick. Germs that cause every illness from the common cold and influenza to meningitis and hepatitis A can be transferred if children fail to wash their hands regularly.

All it takes is contact with the droplets from a cough or sneeze, touching an infected surface, or coming in contact with a sick person’s fluids. A quick touch of the hands to the eyes, nose, or mouth and your child could become infected.

Here are some tips for washing hands properly that you can teach your children.

When to Wash

  • During flu season, frequent hand washing is advised simply to keep the germs at bay.
  • As the adult in the household, it’s essential that you wash your hands before and after preparing food. This is especially the case if you are handling raw meat or eggs.
  • Before eating is one of the most important times to teach your kids to wash up. Get your children in this habit to help prevent germs from entering their system.
  • Wash up again after eating to prevent the spread of germs throughout your home.
  • Teach your children about washing hands properly after they use the bathroom.
  • Get the habit of washing your hands after touching any contaminated surfaces or equipment such as soiled kitchen utensils, garbage, a dirty diaper, a used tissue, or an animal.
  • Remember, children learn by example. This means if you set the example by washing your hands often and at the times you ask your children to wash their hands, they are more likely to follow suit.

How to Wash

  • Wash your hands under warm running water with soap.
  • Lather the soap in your hands for about 20 seconds, being sure to get areas like between your fingers, the backs of your hands, your wrists, and under your fingernails. To make it more fun for the kids, teach them to sing “Happy Birthday” twice in a row before they rinse the soap off their hands.
  • Rinse the soap off well and dry with a clean towel.
  • When soap and water isn’t available, use antibacterial hand sanitizer gel or wipes. Rub your hands together until the moisture of the gel or wipe evaporates. There is no need to use water.

Visit a CareNow provider at any of our 23 DFW locations to learn more tips about washing hands properly.