Today is Global Handwashing Day. With all the troubling new stories about controlling infections disease (or the failure to do so!), this celebration is especially timely. What does this have to do with pleasureinlearning? You might be surprised.
- Sensual pleasure. Treat yourself to some scented hand soap that you enjoy using. Research shows that soap conveys great advantages in removing germs from your hands versus using water alone. However, antibacterial soaps do not appear to offer any advantage over “regular” soap, and may contribute to the emergence of bacterial resistance to antibiotics.
- Surprise. You may be surprised to learn that up to 80% of infectious disease transmission can be prevented by good handwashing.
- Humor. One strategy for ensuring that you spend enough time in washing your hands recommends singing “Happy Birthday to You” twice (and no cheating by singing like The Chipmunks!) You may get some strange looks at the restroom sink. Just smile knowingly.
- Belonging to a group. That would be the group of people whose disgusting paws are not spreading germs all over the place. Downside: you have to take up the slack at work for all the people who are home sick because they, or the person who made their salad, did not wash their hands.
- Achievable challenge. Seriously? Washing your hands is too difficult or too much trouble? You can do this.
- Owning something of value. As in “health.” ‘Nuff said?
- Autonomy. Washing your hands is the ultimate do-it-yourself project. Smokey the Bear used to remind us that “Only you can prevent forest fires.” The truth is, only you can prevent influenza, rotavirus, RSV, and who knows what else.