Global pandemics are not a new thing, there has been one periodically in the past, such as the Spanish flu outbreak or the Great Plague. However, whenever they occur they appear suddenly and quickly spread.
The latest global pandemic, covid-19, is estimated to have killed more than 6 million people across the globe. Modern medicine and science have certainly helped to reduce this number compared to what it could have been, they have even produced a vaccine. However, one of the main ways in which humans have sought to control the disease is by washing hands regularly and using hand sanitizer when washing isn’t possible.
Stocking up on hand sanitizers can seem like a good idea. But, before you do, you need to know more about hand sanitizer and whether it is as effective as you think.
Hand Sanitizers Are Convenient
Washing your hands with soap and warm water is a tried and tested way to eliminate bacteria and avoid spreading it when touching the same surfaces as others. However, it’s not always possible to get to a sink and wash your hands.
That why hand sanitizers have become so popular They can be put in the entrance to shops, hospitals, and even carried in your pocket. That means they are convenient and always ready to be used.
In short, they will encourage people to keep their hands clean as they are so easy to use.
Sanitizers And Bacteria
Hand sanitizers can be effective at killing bacteria and helping you to stay safe during the pandemic. They can even be used after the pandemic to help maintain hygiene and avoid the spread of bacteria.
However, for a hand sanitizer to be effective there are two criteria it needs to meet:
- Alcohol content
The active ingredient in hand sanitizer is alcohol. This is the compound that kills bacteria effectively. In order for the hand sanitizer to be effective it must be at least 60% alcohol. It doesn’t follow that the higher the alcohol content the more effective it is, anything with 60% or more alcohol will kill the bacteria on your hands.
- Mode of usage
However, regardless of the alcohol content, a hand sanitizer can only be effective if it is used properly.
In other words, you need to use the right amount of hand sanitizer. A small blob is usually enough but it’s always worth checking the label for usage directions.
It is then important that the sanitizer is rubbed all over your hands. That includes between all your fingers. Missing any part means that section isn’t bacteria free. It’s important to get this right if you want the sanitizer to do it’s job.
There have ben suggestions that excessive use of hand sanitizers can result in resistance by bacteria, effectively spawning bacteria capable of surviving hand sanitizer.
At present there is no research that confirms this, suggesting that hand sanitizers are a convenient, practical, and safe approach to keeping your hands clean.