Scrubbing the Germs Away: The Health Benefits of Hand-Washing

One of the simplest, but most effective, ways to protect yourself from diseases is properly washing your hands. Maintaining good hygiene can keep you and your loved ones safe and healthy, especially during the colder months.

Hand-washing is a simple task, but it’s more than merely running water over your hands for a few seconds. It’s up to you to decide whether to use warm or cold water, but either way it must be clean. It’s also important to keep in mind that you should be scrubbing your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds – which, as we teach kids, is about how long it takes to sing the ABC song. Remember to get all areas of your hands, including the back of your hands, between your fingers, on your palms, and under your nails. This ensures that all areas of your hands are clean and germ-free.

As we navigate through flu season, hand-washing can play an instrumental role in preventing the flu and other related viruses. With different viruses constantly spreading, keeping yourself clean reduces your risk of catching and spreading diseases. 

Should you find yourself without soap and water, an effective alternative is a hand sanitizer or alcohol-based hand wipe containing at least 60% ethyl alcohol or isopropanol. Keeping these products on hand is a convenient way to eliminate germs and prevent viruses. While these methods do reduce the number of germs on your hands, washing with soap and water remains a more effective method.

While washing your hands may seem like a minor thing to do, it’s extremely important to help you stay healthy. Other practices, such as getting vaccinations and wearing masks, are also instrumental to keeping you healthy during flu season. Capital Health Plan is available to help you safely navigate through all seasons. For further information on best practices to stay healthy and CHP’s resources to help, visit

Sourced By: Healthwise
Reviewed By: Capital Health Plan Physicians Group
Posted: December 11, 2023

2023-12-11 23:00:00