Friday, May 20, 2022
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Expert Advocates Handwashing Habit To Prevent Viral Infections

Dr. Olakunle Babalola, a Pathologist in Lagos, has urged Nigerians to cultivate the habit of handwashing, as it is one of the most neglected but effective ways to prevent viral infections.
Babalola made this call during an interview with correspondents during the recent World Hand Hygiene Day annually observed on May 5.
He expressed concern over the lackadaisical attitude of many Nigerians toward basic hand hygiene.
According to the pathologist, due to ignorance, many fail to adhere to standard procedures of hygiene, which exposes them to a wide range of respiratory and diarrheal infections that could ordinarily be prevented, given the right health attitude.
He said, Hand washing is one of the best ways to protect yourself and your family from getting sick.
Preventing germs spread by washing hands can keep you healthy and prevent the spread of respiratory and diarrheal infections. Babalola says that germs spread from person to person or from surfaces to people, when they touch their eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands, when they prepare or eat food and drinks with unwashed hands or when they touch surfaces or objects that have germs on them.
He further noted that germs could spread when you blow your nose, cough, or sneeze into hands and then touch other peoples hands or common objects.
You can help yourself and others to stay healthy by washing your hands oftene he said.
Some other ideal times for handwashing were highlighted by the pathologist which includes; before, during, and after preparing food; before and after eating food; before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea; before and after treating a cut or wound, because wounds always contain germs, after using the toilet, or after changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet; after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; after touching or feeding an as well as after handling animal waste, and after handling garbage.
Babalola, therefore, prescribed simple, proper ways of washing hands to prevent the spread of germs from person to person and within the communities.
Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold); turn off the tap, and apply soap; lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap; lather the backs of your hands between your fingers and under your nails.
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.
Use hand sanitiser when you can not use soap and water; you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser that contains at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and water are not available, he said.