5 Health Risks Of Bad Handwashing
Industry experts all know that thousands of germs can lurk on an unwashed hand, which is why it is so important to supply products that encourage proper handwashing. To further emphasize the point, Hartford Healthcare reported on a University of Colorado at Boulder study, which found 3,200 bacteria from 150 species on human hands.
Officials outlined five specific risks people are taking when they skip handwashing or interact with those who haven't washed up. According to press reports from Hartford Healthcare:
1. Airborne illnesses: Cold and Flu, Chicken Pox, Meningitis
Respiratory illnesses typically spread when a person inhales droplets expelled into the air by an infected person’s cough or sneeze, even by speaking. But these germs also spread by poor hand hygiene. This year, cold and flu season collides with an expected second wave of COVID-19. Keep that soap and sanitizer ready.
2. Norovirus: Viral gastroenteritis
Norovirus, which causes viral gastroenteritis, can spread rapidly through a facility where hand hygiene is not a priority. Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and stomach pain are common symptoms.
3. E. coli (Escherichia coli)
People can get E. coli by eating tainted meat or touching infected surfaces, but this bacteria also lives in the intestines. Those who do not wash their hands properly after visiting the bathroom — a Michigan State study found that 95 percent of people do not wash their hands sufficiently to kill harmful bacteria — can spread E. coli on everything they touch. Those infected can expect a bout of diarrhea, abdominal cramps and vomiting. Some types of E. coli can also cause urinary tract infections or pneumonia.
Eating foods, usually poultry or other animal, contaminated with salmonella is an invitation to some nasty abdominal pain and cramps, diarrhea and fever. Salmonella lives in animal intestines. (It also lives in human intestines.) People can pick it up by touching eggs or uncooked chicken in a supermarket, too.
5. Hepatitis A
Back to the bathroom: The virus that causes Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person eats or drinks something contaminated with fecal matter. The subsequent liver infection and inflammation is often accompanied by abdominal discomfort, vomiting, darkened urine, loss of appetite and joint pain.
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