A friendly reminder to wash your hands regularly
Even if you haven’t come into contact with anyone during isolation. There are suggestions that the virus can live for up to three days on items like things you might have picked up at the supermarket. Yes, that’s right, you might want to wash your hands now!
But how long can the new coronavirus linger on surfaces, anyway? The short answer is, we don’t know. A new analysis found that the virus can remain viable in the air for up to 3 hours, on copper for up to 4 hours, on cardboard up to 24 hours and on plastic and stainless steel up to 72 hours. This study was originally published in the preprint database medRxiv on March 11, and now a revised version was published March 17 in The New England Journal of Medicine.
Another study published in February in The Journal of Hospital Infection analyzed several dozen previously published papers on human coronaviruses (other than the new coronavirus) to get a better idea of how long they can survive outside of the body.
Wash Your Hands – Now!
They concluded that if this new coronavirus resembles other human coronaviruses, such as its “cousins” that cause SARS and MERS, it can stay on surfaces — such as metal, glass or plastic — for as long as nine days (In comparison, flu viruses can last on surfaces for only about 48 hours.)
But some of them don’t remain active for as long at temperatures higher than (30 degrees Celsius. The authors also found that these coronaviruses can be effectively wiped away by household disinfectants.
You should clean your hands:
- Before eating
- After using the bathroom
- Before touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
- After blowing your nose or sneezing
- When you touch objects and surfaces where someone has been ill
- Before holding a baby
- Before and after changing wound dressings or bandages
- When your hands look or feel dirty
As much as possible, avoid touching your face with unwashed hands. On average, we touch our face 23 times an hour, which means germs picked up from your phone, light switches, doorknobs, and other surfaces have a gateway into your throat, lungs, and sinuses.
Unfortunately, most of us don’t spend enough time washing our hands. Follow these five steps every time:
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Try singing something like “Happy Birthday” song, the “ABCs” or “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” twice to make sure you scrub long enough.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or an air dryer.
Besides going off to the bathroom now to wash your hands – have you got a claim outstanding, or one that has been declined that you know was a wrong decision by the insurance company. Perhaps you had a payout but the amount was well under what you thought was fair and reasonable? Talk to us today.
But first, go wash your hands now and get others in your household to do the same.