Yes, that’s right here I go again with another post on germs! Hey, I can’t help it! People send me emails about this stuff and I feel it is my duty to inform you all about anything that can jeopardize your health. So here is the latest . . . lemon slices in water from restaurants. Now you know how you will ask for water with lemon? To give your H20 a little zest? Okay, after watching this YouTube video, tell me if you will EVER do that again. Who needs lemon in their water anyway?!? I am sure I don’t have to remind you of the effects that “staph” and bacteria can have on women’s health. If you need a refresher, go to my post on “Germs, Germs, Germs.” from www.brightcove.tv posted with vodpod
Well it seems that we women are extremely concerned about the germs we can potentially acquire from being in a very unsanitary environment. The Germs, Germs, Germs post received more hits in the last couple of days, than any other post! So I thought I would stay with the theme and provide more information about other ways we can reduce our intake of nasty germs, like by washing our hands. With the colder months in progress, we are also in cold and flu season. Which means lots of germs floating around in the air and landing just about everywhere. Did you know a sneeze can travel up to 80 miles per hour across a room? Yes! (Oh boy, my germ-a-phobe scale is steadily rising). Also, when you sneeze or cough, tiny respiratory droplets are released into the air from a person’s mouth or nose. And my friends think I’m odd because I cringe and slightly duck after hearing someone release a wet sneeze nearby when I know they didn’t cover their mouth. Nodding your head? Then you know exactly what I am talking about.
Well, you should also know that bacteria and viruses can live 2 hours or longer on surfaces like desks, doorknobs and restaurant/cafeteria tables. I am sure you have all noticed that several restaurants have even started placing trash cans by the restroom door, because they are very aware that people do not want to touch the doorknob, without using a papertowel, when leaving. Doorknobs carry a lot of germs and many people still don’t wash their hands after using the toilet!
This is definitely the time to be even more conscious of washing your hands, especially if you are a mother, about to become a mother in the next few months, or work around small children. For my moms, you want to carry home the least amount of germs as possible, especially if you have small children, who are constantly putting things in their mouths. For my moms-to-be, well you can’t take anything more than Sudafed and drink tea if you get sick, so we want to keep you as healthy as possible. For my women who work around small children, well let’s just say lots of runny noses, lots of coughing and using little hands to wipe these away. Wash your hands a lot!! While many of our immune systems are strong enough to ward off some germs, there are some that we can only get rid of by washing our hands. It is the easiest and most effective way to protect ourselves from most germs and most infections. Thanks to the Mayo Clinic, I found some great tips about hand washing properly and when it is most critical for you to wash your hands.
Here is the proper way to wash your hands:
Wet your hands with warm, running water and apply liquid soap or use clean bar soap. Lather well.
Rub your hands vigorously together for at least 15 to 20 seconds.
Scrub all surfaces, including the backs of your hands, wrists, between your fingers and under your fingernails.
Dry your hands with a clean or disposable towel.
Use the towel to turn off the faucet.
Wash your hands after doing these things:
After using the toilet
After changing a diaper — wash the diaper-wearer’s hands, too
After touching animals or animal waste
Before and after preparing food, especially before and immediately after handling raw meat, poultry or fish
After blowing your nose
After coughing or sneezing into your hands
Before and after treating wounds or cuts
Before and after touching a sick or injured person
After handling garbage
Before inserting or removing contact lenses
When using public restrooms, such as those in airports, train stations, bus stations and restaurants
You need to know that a alcohol-based hand sanitizer is a great alternative to soap and water if it’s unavailable. They are actually more effective than soap and water in killing bacteria and viruses that can cause disease. But, know that CDC recommends that you use only “alcohol-based” sanitzers and contain at least 60% of alcohol.
Now that I have totally freaked each of you out with all of this talk about germs, coughs, and respiratory droplets, at least you are more aware of how to stay healthy this winter. Just think how great it will feel to not have to blow your nose a hundred times because you took a few extra steps and time to wash your hands more.
As someone who travels all of the time, works in public health and is a bit of a germ-a-phobe; I am constantly thinking about the germs in hotel rooms. I obsess in the middle of the night, when I have to get up to use the bathroom about putting on my slippers, because I have no idea what is going on with the floor. I often think I should pack my own Lysol spray, but they don’t sell the travel sizes anymore. Darn!!! Well, thank goodness for travel Lysol wipes! Now, for all of you who think that is a bit over-the-top, watch this video on how hotels don’t clean their glasses in the room, then tell me if you have changed your minds.
How many of you are you completely disgusted now? AND want to start carrying your own plastic glasses wherever you travel? Are you wondering how this relates to women’s health? Well, in case you didn’t know, you may be at risk for a staph infection, herpes and a little bit more from drinking out of these dirty glasses. Also, women that are breastfeeding and newborns are at greater risk than others. Staph infections can result in mastitis (inflammation of the breast) or in abscess of the breast. Staphylococcal breast abscesses can release bacteria into the mother’s milk. Which of course can be transmitted to a nursing infant. Individuals with cancer, diabetes and lung disease are also at a higher risk for a staph infection.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I will be taking any chances on the drinking glasses in any hotel room, including five star hotels. Remember, not every 5 star hotel has 5 star housekeeping. I usually don’t drink out of them anyway, but I do store my toothbrush in them. Not anymore! I won’t even go into the other germy items in a hotel (like the comforter/spread). I will just stop my germ-a-phobe madness here.