Importance of Washing Your Hands at Work
Bacteria thrive in office environments because people spend so much of the day there. That’s why cleaning and disinfecting work areas frequently is highly recommended. In addition to this, it’s important to wash your hands constantly while you’re at work. After all, cleanliness starts at a personal and basic level.
Washing your hand is one of the best ways to prevent you from getting sick and spreading germs to others in the workplace. But there are many other benefits to good hand hygiene.
In this article, the team at Dazzle Cleaning will dive into the importance of a good handwashing routine when you’re at work. We’ll also share some tips to make this a part of your daily routine more easily!
Why Washing Your Hands at Work is So Important
No matter if you work at an office or a retail store, your workplace is a great environment for bacteria to thrive. This is especially important for high-touch surface areas, those areas where people meet and gather the most throughout the day.
Washing your hands at work is the most effective way to prevent the spread of germs and keep yourself and your coworkers healthy. In addition to this, frequent handwashing has many other benefits. Keep reading to learn more about them!
Prevents the Spread of Disease
Most people don’t realize that our hands can transfer germs and bacteria from one surface to another at an alarming rate. But that’s not all! We also frequently touch infected surfaces and then touch our eyes, mouth, and nose without realizing it.
This is the most common way for germs to enter our bodies. Although we can’t stop the spread of germs altogether, we can slow down the rate at which people are infected by washing our hands correctly and regularly.
According to the CDC, handwashing reduces the risk of respiratory infections and illnesses, such as colds, by up to 21 percent. It can also minimize the risk of skin and eye infections, as well as gastrointestinal illness, significantly.
Boosts Attendance and Productivity
Without an effective handwashing protocol, there’s a higher risk of employees getting sick in the workplace. This can significantly affect your business. If employees call out sick, it’s harder to complete tasks and reach your business’s goals in time.
But if an employee comes into work when they’re sick, they won’t be as productive. Plus, they’ll put others at risk of getting sick too. Luckily, you can protect your staff and your business but ensuring that everyone is trained on proper handwashing protocols.
By encouraging regular handwashing at work, you can reduce absenteeism and ensure that no work time is wasted. For instance, just encouraging employees to use alcohol-based hand sanitizer as a means of washing hands can significantly reduce absences due to illness.
How to Wash Your Hands Correctly
Most people believe that hand washing is as simple as rinsing your hands under a faucet. However, this only removes a small percentage of the germs that may be lingering on your fingers or palms.
Instead, you need to wash your hands properly with soap and water for at least 20-30 seconds to get rid of most bacteria and viruses on your hands. As a rule of thumb, singing Happy Birthday twice is an effective timer for washing your hands.
Here’s how you should wash your hands:
- Wet your hands with clean, running water
- Wash your hands with antibacterial soap, spreading the soap all over the surface of your hands
- Rub your palms together to evenly wash your hands
- Lather the back of your hands, making sure to get between the fingers and through the knuckles
- Rub your knuckles together to scrub them clean
- Go over your fingers, knuckles, palms, and thumbs to scrub any parts you may have missed
- Rinse your hands and dry them with clean paper towels or an air dryer
- Once dry, you can apply an alcohol-based hand sanitizer to complete hand disinfection, although it’s not necessary if you’re using antibacterial soap
When to Wash Your Hands When You’re at Work
There is no rule on how many times you should wash your hands at work. But it’s best not to wait until your hands are visibly dirty before you wash up. Instead, make sure to wash your hands thoroughly in these situations:
• Before and after work
• Before and after breaks
• After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
• After using a tissue or handkerchief
• After using the restroom
• Before eating or preparing food
• After smoking
• After handling animals
• As soon as you get home, arrive at other people’s homes or other venues
How to Encourage Frequent Handwashing at Work
A proper handwashing routine is the secret to a healthier and more productive workspace. But how can you encourage other people at work to wash their hands regularly? Here are some tips to help you:
• Be prepared. Always keep soap dispensers full and paper towels stocked. By ensuring sinks are properly equipped for hand washing, you'll encourage people to do it!
• Offer hand sanitizer. Putting hand sanitizer dispensers throughout your office will help people to keep their hands clean throughout the day. While hand sanitizer can’t replace soap and water, it helps kill harmful bacteria and stop the spread of disease. You can even encourage people to keep it at their desk.
• Put up signs. Posting signs in the bathrooms and kitchens will help remind people to wash their hands. You can also choose to offer a short training program on office hygiene.
The workplace is a spot where people spend a lot of time near one another. Because people are so close so frequently, it ups the chances that they can spread germs to one another.
Luckily, regular handwashing at work can reduce the spread of germs and increase regular attendance. Now that you understand the importance of washing your hands at work, you can make sure to include frequent handwashing in your daily routine!
To further protect and improve the general cleanliness of your office, contact Dazzle Cleaning today! With our commercial cleaning services, you can rest assured that your workplace will always be clean and sanitary.