Health & Environment

CDC Recommended Tips for Avoiding Germs During Flu Season

During cold and flu season, handwashing is the best way to prevent yourself and your family from getting sick. Germs are everywhere; they get on our hands and items that we touch. Handwashing can prevent 1 in 5 respiratory infections such as cold and flu, and 1 in 3 diarrhea-related illnesses. Do not use hand sanitizer if your hands are visibly dirty or greasy. Here are some other facts you should know:

How to use alcohol-based products like Purell or Cal Stat (it should contain 60% alcohol):

  • Apply gel to hands.
  • Rub hands together carefully covering all surfaces including fingertips.
  • Rub gel over all the surfaces of hands and fingers until dry.

How to wash hands with soap and water:

  • Use warm running water and soap.
  • Lather hands for about 15 seconds (count to 15).
  • Rinse well.
  • Dry hands with a single-use paper towel.
  • Turn off the faucets with the paper towel.
  • Put paper towel into the trash.

When to clean hands:

  • After sneezing/coughing/blowing nose.
  • After using the toilet.
  • Before and after eating.
  • After handling waste/emptying trash.
  • After touching money/handles of shopping carts/railings.
  • After playing.
  • After touching animals.
  • Before handling food.
  • After touching raw meats, poultry, and fish.
  • When arriving at work.
  • Anytime you change tasks (go from one thing to another)

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