Doing It Correctly: Healthy Handwashing

In cold and flu (and other nasty things) season, it’s especially smart to know how to wash your hands properly, and to practice what you know. We’re including links to several videos on how to properly wash your hands. There are different techniques, and some groups encourage different methodologies and dedication of time. Currently our United States CDC suggests washing your hands for at least 20 seconds (and they suggest singing the “Happy Birthday” song twice in order to do it right).

Here’s a handy video from the World Health Organization suggesting you do each of its steps for 10 seconds.

Here’s a quick informative page from the United States CDC on handwashing technique, and one with a featured video.

Essentially:

  1. wet your hands,
  2. lather with soap,
  3. get under your nails,
  4. scrub palm to palm,
  5. scrub palm to back of hand,
  6. and do the same to the other hand,
  7. scrub thumb in opposing closed hand,
  8. and do the same with other thumb,
  9. scrub palm with opposing hand’s finger- (and thumb-) tips,
  10. and do the same to the other hand,
  11. scrub along length of each finger,
  12. rinse,
  13. grab a paper towel to thoroughly dry hands (more scrubbing!) and to turn off the water–and use that paper towel to open the bathroom door. Then throw that nasty thing away.

But what if I don’t have soap and hot water? You can use alcohol-based hand sanitizer (60% alcohol or better) and friction is an important aspect of all of this, so scrub, scrub, scrub! And remember not to touch your face. Take care of yourself and take care of each other–teach your children proper handwashing, too. Good habits deserve to be passed along!

 

Simple Health Precautions for Cold, Flu, and Other Concerns

It’s all over the news, even causing President Trump to address the concern in a brief conference last night : coronavirus (or, more properly, COVID-19).  You can click here to see Trump’s remarks, they start on COVID-19 at 06:30 on the time stamp slide, prior to that it’s set-up, and remarks on the most recent mass shooting. At 23:50 on the same video, a representative from the CDC speaks about how to stay healthy.

In an effort to provide facts, we’re sharing a link-rich resource with you. Each link (until the word “*Additionally”) takes you to a vetted medical or science-based source.

The main advice health officials are repeating is the importance of good and frequent hand-washing.

The good news is: That’s simple! The bad news is: you may be doing it wrong. You can review how to do it correctly here. In short, 20 seconds of good, serious scrubbing with soap and water (sing the Happy Birthday song from beginning to end twice), and get under your nails–all sorts of creepy stuff can linger there.

Other advice includes: covering your mouth and nose properly if coughing or sneezing (the previous advice via World Health Organization or  WHO), keeping out of people’s “personal bubble,” and, if you’re sick (cold, flu, whatever), please stay home. 

The virus is zoonotic, and has an incubation period of 1 to 14 days (with most people showing symptoms at five days after exposure before symptoms show up). Symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath.

If you would like to see a map of where cases have been verified, Johns Hopkins has shared one that is very informative.

The CDC is providing tips for communities so they can be better prepared here.

This is a useful site to share with friends on social media if you want to help slow the spread of disinformation.

The CDC also has suggestions for businesses and employers to consider as pandemic plans are updated (which should routinely be done).

Here’s what the NY Gov site specifically says about it: https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/. They have a chart they are updating daily there.

*Additionally, one CDC official (head of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, Dr. Nancy Messonnier) has suggested Americans consider preparing for a disruption of norms by being ready with essential supplies, food, water, medicine, and entertainment for family members. Dr. Messonnier has also suggested schools consider tele-schooling and that certain jobs consider telecommuting options for employees. You can read her suggestions here or here, at various news media sites.

We hope this is helpful to our patrons and readers. At the library we are continuing to disinfect shared surfaces and items and have no issues (ever) if you need to call and renew books because you are feeling under the weather. We are here to help you.