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Exposed: Popular Washroom Hygiene Myths Busted!

We are living in the information age and there is certainly no shortage of information about health and hygiene matters. These days, answers to most of our questions can be found at our fingertips, but are the answers we find online always correct? The prevalence of terms like ‘fake news’ and ‘mis-information’ would suggest not!

That’s why we’ve decided to set the record straight. This month we’re going to bust a few popular washroom hygiene myths and shed some light on the truth.

“Viruses only spread through the air”

Improving office hygiene is one of the most effective ways to reduce absenteeism, raise perceptions and improve overall staff wellbeing. Unfortunately, most workplaces are fighting an uphill battle, contending with a popular yet unfounded belief that viruses can only be spread through the air.

The reality is that viruses, such as the flu virus for example, can also survive for a number of hours on hard surfaces. That means the next time someone leaves the washroom without washing their hands, they risk spreading germs beyond just the washroom and into the main office environment.

Items they come into contact with have the potential to become harmful such as keyboards, desks, door handles, coffee mugs and many more! Personal hygiene is one of the biggest factors to affect the levels of hygiene within a workplace. People shouldn’t be caught out by this myth and everyone should be encouraged to keep the high standards of personal hygiene – for their sake and their colleagues.

“There isn’t a right or wrong way to wash your hands”

From a very young age we are taught that washing our hands helps keep them clean and keeps us healthy.  By the time we reach adult life it’s become an almost automatic, unconscious action that we undertake with little thought or consideration.

However, the latest research suggests a little thought and consideration when washing our hands wouldn’t go amiss. While it may seem simple enough, a study has revealed that 4 in every 5 adults aren’t washing their hands properly!

So, what does properly look like? Well for a start, the duration of the hand washing needs to be long enough to kill the bacteria. A quick rinse under the tap isn’t going to cut it. The recommended duration is at least 20 seconds, and soap is essential. The study also revealed how thoroughly washing the back of your hands as well as your palms and fingers should not be overlooked.

“Germs are spread by using washroom hand dryers”

Sticking on the theme of hand hygiene, our third and final washroom hygiene myth is that hand dryers are not a hygienic way to dry your hands and can contribute to the spread of harmful germs and bacteria both within the restroom and outside in the workplace.

We’ve saved this myth for last because there is a half-truth in this one, and it all comes down to the hand dryer in question. If we keep in mind that unclean hands are one of the most prevalent ways germs are spread, it’s no surprise that the quality of a hand dryer will play a part in how well those germs are eradicated.

At one time or another we’ve all been in a run-down washroom with old, out-dated hand dryers that struggle to splutter out barely warm air. Our hands are left damp and a breeding ground for germs has been created. Contrast that with a well-maintained washroom using modern hand dryers capable of completely drying your hands in a matter of seconds and the risk of germs being spread has been erased.

To summarise, yes, some hand dryers can contribute to the spread of germs but by using the latest high-performance hand dryers available from a commercial hygiene services company they can be transformed into the most hygienic and effective drying method available.

Contact TWC Group today for a free site audit and guidance on how you can take your washroom hygiene to the next level and make your workplace a happier and healthier place to be.