Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Wash Your Hands!

Do you wash your hands before your leave the restroom? C'mon, be honest. I won't tell anyone. Well, it seems that in a recent study, less people are washing their hands compared to 2005. Ew! What's up with that? The article is from WebMD.
Researchers who discretely observed men and women in public restrooms found that only 77% washed their hands with soap and water -- a 6% decline from 2005.

But not many people are admitting to slipping up: In a separate telephone survey, 92% of Americans claimed they always lather up in public restrooms. The findings were reported at a meeting of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM).
Who is more to blame? Men or women? What do you think? Here's the answer from the article.
The blame lies squarely with the men, says Brian Sansoni, a spokesman at the Soap and Detergent Association, which cosponsored the survey with the ASM.

The percentage of men observed washing their hands fell from 75% in 2005 to 66% in 2007. In contrast, hygiene habits basically stalled among women: 90% washed up in 2005, compared with 88% in 2007.
Now, as compared to yesterday when I talked about things like lab coats and neckties potentially spreading bacteria, I'm a huge advocate of hand washing in the hospital setting, before leaving the restroom, and other situations where bugs can spread. So, do us all a favor and just wash your hands, would ya?


Travis Cody said...

I worked in the admin department of a large hospital many years ago. Just like the health care professionals, we were required to sit for the same health safety classes. One of them was the importance of hand washing.

I'm not a compulsive hand washer, but I can't imagine not washing your hands before handling food or after using the rest room.

Anonymous said...

I learned how to wash my hands from a nurse, and working in food service, I wash my hands more in a day than most people do in a month. I open the bathroom door at work with a handful of paper towels, for fear of the people who urinate on their fingers, don't wash, and open the door. It's so nasty, I've even seen my guests do it and it makes me want to hurl. I've even seen guests sitting at my table leave the toilet after leaving a few pounds there, and try to shake my hand.....I grabbed a dish to get out of it.

Donna. W said...

You know what discourages my washing my hands in public restrooms? Those stupid blow-dryer things that do NOT dry your hands. Paper towels, please!

Anonymous said...

well that explains a lot. i work in an infectious disease clinic, and our doctors are about the only ones in the area who see patients in clinic. it has always been a busy place.

but it seems its only been getting busier, and the incoming flux of new patients has been insane lately. theres no end to infections around here, and we see a large number of post surgery infections - scarey thought.

im big on washing my hands too. kind of anal about it, and have been for many years.

OHN said...

Firstly--EWWWW! Ok, now I am not OCD but I see a lot of advantages to the disorder. The first thing I do when I come home from anywhere is wash my hands..the kids walk in from school and have been pavlov'ed into doing the same..wash hands, eat cookie..good boy!

The one thing that nobody seems to think about...what is the first thing you touch after using the potty? THE has to be the grossest thing. True confession here..I have been known to use my foot when absolutely necessary...gross yes, but I am not touching that thing!

Anonymous said...

Henry the Hand rules!

Ros said...

I do not wash my hands in public restrooms, in fact I do not touch any surfaces in public restrooms with the tips of my fingers or the palm of my hand. Instead I carry hand sanitizer everywhere, ever since my daughter was born, and I use it compulsively on both of us. Personally I think not drying your hands well is worse than not washing them.

Kirsten said...

I bet the number of people who report that they wash their hands after using the restroom include faux-washers. I've been sitting on the can at work and heard the water run for just a few seconds, so I know those people aren't actually washing their hands - just hydrating the germs.

Your Mother said...

Remember how in the old days, it was said that women wore long skirts during war time because the public mood was less confident? With the political/global situation today, perhaps men and women are washing their hands less because they figure, "Why bother? World's goin' to hell in a handbasket anyway."

I'm mostly just kidding. Having fun with that statistical blip that is a reduction in handwashing in the last two years!

Maggie Rosethorn said...

I wash my hands, with water only, after going to the restroom at work or in public because I am very sensitive to many soap products and prefer not to itch all day. However, I do routinely wash my hands at home, with soap and water, before handling food. I also wash with soap at home after going to the bathroom. So, where do I fall in the statistics? As a washer or as a non-washer? I can't use the hand sanatizers, handwipes, or anything else due to the sensitivity, so I do the best I can.

Anonymous said...

One of my pet peeves in the hospital is gum chewing. Hey doc, are these cud-chewers exposing my patients through their open-mouthed gum chewing?

Cory said...

I'm a bit compulsive about washing my hands, or at least using hand sanitizer. I work in tech support and some people have seriously gross computers!
However, I also have allergies to some soap products. I usually keep a thing of liquid soap handy or a hand sanitizer that I can use for when I find a place that gives me problems.