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Archive for March, 2009

Dear Readers,

Spring might be in the air but flu germs are in the air also.  This is a good time for a “Mimi Tip” about how important it is to thoroughly wash our hands to control those nasty flu germs!

Read an article by Elizabeth Weise in USA Today entitled “Soap and Hot Water for Health”.  I’m going to quote frequently from this very informative article.

Frequent hand washing will help you “stay a lot healthier – 24 percent less likely to get a respiratory illness and 45 to 50 percent less likely to get a stomach bug, says the World Health Organization”.

“Hand washing ‘has a huge health impact,’ says Anna Bowen, an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.  Water is not the most important part, it’s ‘the friction and duration’, she says.  ‘You really need to scrub vigorously for about 20 seconds’.”

“Michael Smith, WebMD’s chief medical editor says that hand washing is the number one way to prevent infection.”

“Popular alcohol hand gels aren’t as effective as soap and water but they’re better than nothing, Smith says.  Soap and water help dislodge dirt, bacteria and viruses so they ‘can go down the drain,’ he says.  With gels, ‘the bacteria has nowhere to go’.”

Here are the hand washing tips noted in the article:

Soap – Use liquid soap dispensers that do not require any touching.

Scrub – Wash vigorously for 20 seconds in water set at 95 to 105 degrees F.  Scrub palms, individual fingers, back side of hands, under fingernails, around cuticles and up forearms.

Rinse – Rinse hands with fingers pointing downward to make sure contaminants are washed off.

Dry – Dry hands completely with clean paper towel or under hot air.

Hope this info on hand washing is helpful.  It’s no fun having the flu or a stomach bug, not to mention a cold.  Stay healthy and

Keep Smilin’!

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