Hand sanitizers?

hand sanitizerWhen I was in the hospital I noticed they had hand sanitizer in a dispenser right at the door with a sign to use it. Most everyone who came into my room used it. Then I was talking to someone one day about the H1N1 flu and they told me they take hand sanitizer with them everywhere they go and use it all the time. Now I’d heard of this before and I’ve used it a few times but I’m just one of those people who want to use as hot of water as I can stand with LOTS of good old fashioned soap. I just don’t feel as clean without doing that. In my mind I know that’s probably just my imagination but there’s nothing to me like a good old fashioned hand washing.

This was on the news on Good Question Monday night and I wanted to see what you all had to say about it. It pretty much tells us that when used correctly, hand sanitizer can kill the H1N1 virus and a lot of other germs. The flu virus can survive on your hand for only 5 minutes and it depends what you do with your hand in that 5 minutes after being in contact with the virus that’s what’s important. A lot of us touch our face or rub our eyes or touch our nose or something. The virus can survive on a shiny surface like a door knob for 1 to 2 days.

I guess to be honest I’m not all that concerned about getting this new strain of flu. I don’t want to get any kind of flu. Or cold or sore throat or any other illness. I hate being sick but I’m protecting myself right now in just the same way I always would have in the past. I haven’t “stepped” it up in any way. If I’m gonna get sick, I’m gonna get sick and I’ll try and keep my hands clean and keep wiping the tv remotes, phone, computer keyboards and mice all wiped down with Clorox wipes every few days but I do that anyway. I wonder how many people are overly paranoid about this H1N1.

I did hear that you have to rub that sanitizer on your hands until it’s dry or it’s ineffective. I also heard you should tell kids to sing the WHOLE ABC song while washing their hands and that should do the trick to getting all the germs off. I’ve started humming that to myself and can’t seem to stop doing it!

Where do you stand? Do you obsess about your hands being clean? Are you still protecting yourself the same way you did before or have you really  “stepped” it up?

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16 Responses to Hand sanitizers?

  1. Vicki says:

    Ive stepped it up.. I have a big jug of hand sanitizer in the kitchen and a small one that sits in the bathroom and I use it often.

    • Vicki says:

      I also use the hand sanitizers in the stores if available to wipe off the handle on the carts..they say they are the worst as far as germs are concerned..I never used to do any of this stuff before..

    • Joy says:

      I wash my hands a lot of times during the day and if I’m doing something gross, I use gloves and still wash my hands. That stuff just would make me feel I needed to wash my hands to get it off! Does that make sense?

      Grocery carts and stores are the worst for me. I carry clorox wipes in my purse as well as wet ones for my hands. I try not to obsess over it because I do feel we need some germs to maintain our immune systems but man, I hate stores.

    • Joy says:

      I should also say that sadly, I’ve always been this way. Flu’s or not.

  2. Lucy says:

    I ve always been kinda obsessive about germs, so I haven’t really stepped it up. I’ve always carried a sanatizer in my purse and my car. And have one at my office. After I use public restrooms I NEVER touch the handle without using a paper towel …I’ve seen too many people leave without washing their hands!!!

  3. Laura says:

    I invited a friend over when she had Swine Flu. She didn’t come, of course, she lives in another state. But still.

    First, I think the whole Swine Flu thing, as well as every other year’s “Flu of the Day” – West Nile Virus, SARS – is more hype from the press than anything.

    Second, while I believe that those hand sanitizers have a place, like in the ICU of a hospital (ok, I’ll give you most of the hospital), I think, on the whole that they’re detrimental. Why? Because people are overusing them. And the antibacterial soap. And antibiotics in general. We have infections like MRSA now, because people tend to overuse antibiotics.

    Don’t get me wrong, I wash my hands with hot water and (non-antibiotic) soap, I keep my house clean, and use disinfectant when appropriate (kitchen and bathroom, mostly). But I don’t go crazy over it. In fact, I tend NOT to use antibiotic stuff, and I use bleach very sparingly because we have a septic system, which relies on bacteria.

  4. joz1234 says:

    The only thing I have done differently is that I go around the house once a week with lysol and spray off all the surfaces we put our hands on often (light switches, door knobs, etc…) Other than that, we have just kept up our handwashing. The boys are both really good about it–Bert, my 5 year old, even washes his hands in the middle of the night if he wakes up to go pee. (wow!) I have to admit that if I am ever lazy about it, it is at 2 in the morning when I had to wake up.

  5. nikki says:

    I had along comment and someone it got deleted! Ok well long comment now short. I don’t us antibaterial soap or really hardly an products in my home. Good HOT water and sometimes soap to clean. Without some germs your immune system won’t learn to fight them. We do wash our hands and are clean people..I clean everyday. I just don’t kill every germ! I know someone who always had bleach in their sink and wipe down everything often and wondered why her kids weres till sick all the time. Hello!!! Let your kids learn to fight bacteria on their own! I do use the antibacterial stuff in the stores when I see it and I do use the wipes at Walmart…best thing that store ever did!
    So no I guess I haven’t stepped it up any. I certainly don’t allow kids with fevers to come over. Really the only time I spray Lysol or something is after one of us has been sick. But that’s it. So far so good..no flu’s. Common colds but I don’t think those are bad for our bodies. Didn’t end up so short after all….

  6. SKL says:

    Well, on one hand, I don’t like touching other people’s yuck. I try not to put my hand on public doors and such if I can avoid it. But that’s more because some people are gross. I’m not really a germophobe. I figure, there aren’t that many deadly illnesses out there (to a healthy person), and what doesn’t kill ya makes ya stronger.

    With two preschoolers, the chances of us avoiding H1N1 appear to be approximately nil. I really believe that almost everyone’s gonna get it unless they are already vaccinated before it comes to town. So I could go out there and get exposed and get it over with, or spoil my holidays trying to hide from it, only to catch it eventually anyway. I opt for the former. I am pretty sure my kids and I have already had it, and are now getting over it.

    As far as hand sanitizers, yeah, I agree, if I have bathroom dirt on my hands, adding alcohol to it isn’t going to make it go away, is it? Maybe it’s become bathroom yuck with dead germs instead of alive germs, but I still don’t want to eat a french fry with those hands, ya know? Besides, that stuff is actually poisonous, especially for kids, if they ingest any significant amount. Sometimes, when there’s no water available, it’s better than nothing. But given a choice, I opt for good old-fashioned soap and water, or just plain water. And (famous last words) I ain’t dead yet.

  7. javajunkee says:

    ok the public hand sanitizers…is there a pump handle? Who touched the pump before you??? See so to me that’s pointless..now EVERYBODY has just touched that pump!

    I have also heard that the hand
    own little bottle in the van with me and use it alot. I figure is it hurting anything probably not and maybe I can convince myself it will help.

    I figure if we are going to get it we are going to get it. I would be more afraid of what is in that shot. I know some people with weakened immune systems maybe need to take the roll of the dice and hope for the best but most semi healthy people need to let their immune systems work or they will never boost their body up to fight crap.

    right now I would be more afraid of being in a hospital than getting H1N1. There are so many people going into our hospitals around here and not coming back out except to be in a casket and this is routine shit. Whatever is going on in there is a lot scarier than these flu’s!

  8. Gary says:

    I wash my hands quite often throughout the day with warm water and liquid soap. We don’t have any hand sanitizer but that sounds like a pretty good idea. I knew a guy that carried a little bottle of hand sanitizer in his pocked and used it like every 5 or 10 minutes. That seemed pretty obsessive to my wife and I and that was BEFORE the H1N1 scare.

  9. Karen Joy says:

    I have not stepped it up,we are pretty clean and careful already.I wont be getting the shot either,I believe I just got over “that” flu”!I think the media has scared the public,seems blown out of proportion to me but what do I know.
    Its good habit to at least use a hand sanitizer once youve touched public door handles etc.Some people are just gross.

  10. nikki says:

    I hate when public rest rooms only have the air driers. I like paper towels for opening the door to get out! I have major problems with public restrooms!

  11. Just a Mom says:

    I am not a big fan of the hand sanitizers. In my opinion it proper hand washing is more effective than the hand sanitizers. I also heard that they don’t kill the H1N1 virus and that only bleach will.
    I am not doing anything different because of this new strain of flu than I have for any other illness going around. If your sick stay away from me!!

  12. Sue says:

    I am not a big fan of hand sanitizer because of the way it smells and how it feels sticky after it’s dried. I do still use it though. Hospitals have them in each room to protect patients basically. Everyone should “foam in-foam out” when they enter or exit your hospital room to kill whatever they brought with them on their hands in and on the way out to kill whatever they might have picked up from you so they don’t spread it to the next patient. If your hands are visibly dirty, you just used the bathroom, or just handled raw food or are going to eat, you need to use soap and water to wash with. Otherwise the sanitizer can be used. Yes, you need to rub it all in and wait til it’s dry for it to work properly and it can be easier on your skin in dry months than soap and water is. It comes down to personal preference I think.

  13. mssc54 says:

    I have stepped up the hand sanatizer a bit but not to much.

    However, two years ago our oldest daughter (who works at a local hospital) ended up with some sort of rash (bumps all over her hands). She used to use those sanitizers all the time and NEVER touched a public door handle with her bare hands. She would use her shirt sleeve or bottom of her blouse or somethiing just not her bare hands. Anyway the bumps on her hand ended up being there because of lack of germs. She had killed everything so much that her skin reacted to it. She had to cut back on the sanitizer.

    Incidentally our two youngest kids call it “HANITIZER!” haha

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