Hand hygiene isn’t just a common courtesy when leaving a bathroom or preparing food, it’s a vital step in stopping the spread of common viruses and bacteria which lead to many illnesses.

When to wash?

  • Before, during and after preparing food
  • Before eating food
  • Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick
  • Before and after treating a cut or wound
  • After using the toilet
  • After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
  • After touching an animal, animal feed or animal waste
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching garbage

The best handwashing technique:

With soap:

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water and then apply soap
  2. Rub your hands together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails
  3. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Singing the “Happy Birthday” song to yourself from beginning to end twice will take right around 20 seconds!
  4. Rinse your hands thoroughly under clean, running water
  5. Dry your hands using a clean towel.

* If soap and water are unavailable, we recommend using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.

With hand sanitizer:

  1. Apply the foam or gel product to the palm of one hand (read the label to learn the correct amount)
  2. Rub your hands together
  3. Rub the gel over all the surfaces of your hands and fingers until your hands are dry. Be sure to get the backs of your hands as well. This should take around 20 seconds.

Do your part in keeping the community healthy and wash regularly, and thoroughly. When in doubt – wash again!