When Stevie Wonder first sang about washing your face and hands in 1972’s classic song “Superstition” he could have no idea of its relevance in 2021.
For as we start our recovery from the Covid 19 pandemic many people have indeed become superstitious about the routines which have kept them safe over the past 18 months – and with good reason too.
You see, it is human nature to stay in routines and patterns.
Some of the routines we have made felt very alien at first but we have got used to. Social distancing and mask wearing now feel quite normal for example.
While human contact, hugs and group gatherings have been missed by many. Something which we have become wary of doing to keep ourselves and others safe.
But while the country starts to open up, one routine which we must all remember to keep doing is to wash our hands.
It would be easy to dismiss rigid handwashing as just another pandemic safeguard that might be relaxed, but I can assure you this really isn’t the case.
That’s because vaccination alone does not give 100% protection from the Covid virus, and the protection may wane unless we have boosters in the future.
Our hands can transmit all sorts of germs, not just coronavirus, so hand sanitising and hand washing is a good habit to practice forever. Why stop now?
This summer especially, when more attractions are open, people are mixing outdoors, and domestic holidays are beginning again. You must remember to wash your hands (properly with soap and water) and if you can, take a small bottle of hand sanitiser with you.
What many people forget is to re-apply sanitiser. As it doesn’t last all day. How many times would depend on what you’re doing. But certainly be mindful that one sanitising per day is not enough.
Try and look for a product that has anti-bacterial and anti-viral benefits, as this means it will have been lab tested to kill up to 99.9 per cent of bacteria. Normally this will be written on the packaging for you to easily see.
I am not saying people should be scared, superstitious, or frightened about catching things from touch. But I am saying be careful. And the more prepared we are, the better we will all be for it.
Until next time. Dr Hilary