Contact: Collette DuValle, 317-373-2391

National Hand Washing Awareness Week is December 4-10

The Marion County Public Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention remind you that good hand washing is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others.

In honor of National Hand Washing Awareness Week, here are some tips to stay healthy by washing your hands.

How to wash hands:

  • Wet your hands with clean running water and apply soap.
  • Rub hands together to make a lather and scrub all surfaces.
  • Continue rubbing hands for 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the "Happy Birthday" song from beginning to end twice.
  • Rinse hands well under running water.
  • Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

When to wash hands:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before eating food
  • Before and after caring for someone who is sick
  • After using the toilet
  • After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • After touching an animal or animal food or waste
  • After touching garbage

If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol to clean hands, and wash hands with soap and water at the first opportunity. Hand sanitizers are not effective against all types of germs, and they do not work well when hands are visibly soiled.