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October 15 is Global Handwashing Day; here's how to do it right

October 15 is Global Handwashing Day; here's how to do it right
Posted at 10:09 AM, Oct 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-15 11:09:23-04

Another reason to wash those hands, Thursday is Global Handwashing Day.

October 15 has been designated as a day to remember that “soap and water is one of the best steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Global Handwashing Day was established in 2008 by the Global Handwashing Partnership, an international organization dedicated to awareness about the health and economic benefits of handwashing hygiene and making clean water and soap available to all.

This year’s Global Handwashing Day is also a reminder that proper handwashing with soap is a recognized way to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

This year’s theme is “hand hygiene for all” and “calls for institutions and individuals to improve hand hygiene efforts in the COVID-19 response that can outlast the pandemic and ensure continued access to clean water and soap,” the CDC says.

The CDC estimates that the number of colds and respiratory illnesses in a community could be reduced between 16-21 percent with handwashing education.

The CDC has some recommendations for proper handwashing:

  • There are 5 easy steps to washing hands: wet, lather, scrub, rinse and dry.
  • Wash for 20 seconds with soap and water.
  • Make it part of the routine:
    • Before you eat
    • After using the restroom
    • Coming inside from spending time outside or in public
  • Adults can be a good role model and wash hands often.
    • With younger children, make it a family activity and wash hands together.
  • Choose a song or music verse to sing while washing. Need ideas? Try this, this or this (including hits from Prince, Lizzo, Toto and Beyonce). Yes, even older kids can sing while washing their hands.