Why is hand washing important?

Dr Deepak Solanki
3 to 7 years

Created by Dr Deepak Solanki
Updated on Jun 09, 2016

Why is hand washing important
Reviewed by Expert panel

Infants ,toddlers, and older children often get their hands on almost everything within their reach. After all childhood is all about freedom, but with this freedom comes the risk of acquiring germs on hands which can lead to various stomach infections ,common cold, skin infections ,eye infections, and even chest infections.

Why is it essential to keep your hands clean

When people who are sick sneeze or cough, the germs that are making them sick are expelled into the air through tiny droplets. If these droplets get onto your hands, and then you touch your mouth, eyes or nose without washing away the germs, you carry the infection to your body. You can also get sick if you don't wash your hands before and after preparing food, after handling food, and after using the toilet.

Washing hands not only prevents you from getting sick, but it also reduces the risk of infecting others. Hand washing is a practice advocated worldwide to eliminate these germs .It acts as a prophylactic (pre-emptive protection) against infection.

When all is it necessary to wash your hands

A child playing outside, will need a thorough handwash once he is back home irrespective of whether he intends to eat something or not (although as a general rule that it is must to do a good handwash prior to food consumption to avoid any infections).

Here is a brief overview of correct way of washing your and your child’s hands :-

1)Hand washing is to be done with a good antibacterial agent solution, many of which are available in the market.
2)The prime areas of focus should be -palms,nails,inter digital spaces (between fingers),front and back of hand.
3)Adequate time should be devoted to the act of handwashing (at least 20-30 seconds). It shouldn't be a very quick one.
4)Once washed ,use a fresh napkin or hand towel to dry your hands.
5) If food is to be consumed soon after the wash ,it is imperative that touching dirty surroundings should be avoided so as to avoid nullifying the effect of handwash.
6) Apart from this,good and thorough washing of fruits and vegetables prior to consumption is also mandatory to wash off pesticides /ripening agents which can have a disastrous effect on our body.
7)Either going to a nearby restaurant or travelling anywhere, alcohol based handrubs can come handy, when option of handwash is not available .

Handwashing is a very cost effective habit and goes a long way in preventing infections which would otherwise lead to consumption of medicines to tide over the acquired infection. There have been studies worldwide which have time and again proven the efficacy of this simple exercise. Inculcate handwashing into your child’s daily routine and see the difference yourself.

Happy parenting.

This content has been checked & validated by Doctors and Experts of the parentune Expert panel. Our panel consists of Neonatologist, Gynecologist, Peadiatrician, Nutritionist, Child Counselor, Education & Learning Expert, Physiotherapist, Learning disability Expert and Developmental Pead.

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| Nov 10, 2018

thankx for information.

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| Nov 26, 2016

this kind of information is he generally already know but it'smakes us more conscious

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| Jun 23, 2016

Thanks dr. Deepak

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| Jun 22, 2016

valid information,thank u

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| Jun 22, 2016

very nice information

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| Jun 14, 2016

thank u very much dr. deepika.. giving us a important information...

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| Jun 12, 2016


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| Jun 10, 2016

very nice information thanx

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| Jun 09, 2016

The information given by Dr. deepak is very correct and useful in our day to day life.

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| Jun 09, 2016

Thank you so much Dr. Deepak for sharing such useful information.. ! You hav explained the importance of washing hands beautifully in an amazingly simplistic and effective manner. Thanks again!

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