Wash your hands for health

If you ever wonder how you got the ‘flu or that nasty stomach bug, the answer is probably from your own hands. In 1846, many women in the maternity ward died from fever. A doctor in Europe figured out that the fever probably came from the doctors’ hands. When he made everyone in the hospital wash their hands before and after touching a patient, far fewer women got sick and died.

It’s so simple! Regularly washing your hands is the best way to get rid of germs you pick up when you touch things. Imagine how many other people touched a door handle before you. Every person who touches the handle leaves behind some germs. When you touch the handle, you can pick up some germs from someone who has the ‘flu. When you touch your face or eat without washing your hands, guess what? Those germs go into your mouth and into your nose and the next day you are sick.

To make sure you don’t get colds, ‘flu or stomach bugs, wash your hands with soap and water. If you don’t have soap and water, you can use alcohol-based hand sanitiser. For less than R20 you can get a small bottle of hand sanitiser to keep in your handbag. You can then spray your hands regularly to kill the germs that might make you sick. This also stops you from spreading germs that make others sick.

When is the best time to wash your hands? Try to always wash your hands when you

  • Are going to prepare food and when you finished preparing food.
  • Are going to eat.
  • Are looking after someone who is sick.
  • Treat a cut or wound.
  • Went to the toilet.
  • Changed a baby’s nappy or wiped a child’s bottom.
  • Coughed, sneezed or blew your nose.
  • Touched an animal or an animal’s food.
  • Touched garbage.

If you get sick you can’t go to work or school. You will need medicine, which is expensive. The easiest and cheapest way to stop yourself from getting sick is simple. Just wash your hands regularly to kill the germs that you pick up when you touch things. If you do that, not only will you not get other people’s germs, but you will also not leave behind germs that make others sick.

Stay healthy. Wash your hands for health.






By: Marisca Harris

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