A life and death issue.
It’s a joke, right?
Unless you’re on the receiving end.
Because you use your hands for everything, not so? You’re pretty well stuck without them.
Hands unprotected from germs
Which means they touch everything – good and bad – that is in our lives. And we do things with them almost without thinking.
Take bad. Dog poo on the carpet. Who knows what kind of germs could be lurking in there? Get rid of it, fast, before anyone winds up in hospital.
Uh, huh. Major health alert – we all know the drill:
- wear latex gloves or hands inside a plastic bag
- use paper towel to pick up with
- use second bag to bin it
- get more paper towel or cloth to clean carpet (plus bleach or detergent)
- discard everything as waste
- wash your hands thoroughly afterwards
Now take good. A double-header cone from the ice cream van – with flake and hundreds and thousands.
Probably straight grab and eat, right? Down the hatch before the van even leaves the street. Quite safe after the dog poo was washed off.
Slurp, slobber, enjoy – that was good.
OK, but how about the rest of the day?
Work, shopping, lunch, playing with the kids – easy stuff, no need to wash hands.
Hang on a minute, how about before lunch? Don’t you wash your hands first?
The loo calls
And surely there must be a pee break or two- especially at the office, awash in coffee to keep you hyped up and on the ball?
Wash your hands? Sorry, I meant too.
Yet the dog poo was a whole major mission – so why does it get more attention than our own?
Fact is, however you finagle it, it is impossible – repeat, IMPOSSIBLE – to go to the loo without getting stuff on your hands. (Tweet this)
Worse, every flush creates a micro-spray of water mixed with yuck – too fine to see, but able to spread twenty feet or more. Spray and wee, spray and poo, nothing nice for anyone.
It gets worse
Plus of course, it’s not just your poo you have to worry about.
That posh-looking person in the three-piece suit just came back from Asia. Luckily no norovirus on the plane, but there were typhoid cases in the departure city.
Typhoid in the poo mist, highly contagious. A serious bacterial infection.
And if you don’t wash your hands, you could just be unlucky. Screaming high temperature, diarrhoea like you can’t believe, and yes, your bowel can actually split open.
Two weeks on antibiotics minimum. You could die if it’s bad – or find you’re no longer playing with a full deck. Worse than death if that’s possible. And all from not washing hands.
Far fetched? Panic stirring?
Have you checked how the medical people are getting worried about antibiotic resistance? Antimicrobial resistance (the other name for it) is No 1 on the radar for everybody from the government. on down. It’s when antibiotics DON’T WORK ANY MORE.
That means back to the Dark Ages – even the Prime Minister says so. You get an infection, you’re on your own because the medicines can no longer control it.
Which means it’s not norovirus – the Don’t-Wash-Hands Disease, or campylobacter (the raw chicken chucker-upper), or any of the usual suspects we have to worry about.
The real killers
Catch any of those without medicine that works – and you’re a goner.
But all preventable – or very much a reduced risk – if you always wash your hands.
We shouldn’t have to remind ourselves, but we do – our lives are so rush-rush, do-it-now, that hand hygiene is always forgotten.
So yes, a life and death issue – and it only takes one lapse to trigger it.
Don’t let it be too late before it dawns on us.
Originally posted 2015-06-01 12:27:42.