Efficient Hand-Hygiene Practice to Reduce HFMD Risks

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) is a contagious illness caused by different viruses. It is common among infants and children under 5 years old. With current needs and lifestyle of families, the risk of contracting HFMD increases when parents send their kids to daycare centres. Such an environment is a convenient place for the spread of HFMD as children mingle and play together. According to Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), frequent hand-washing and good hand hygiene practice could reduce the risk of infection.

Below are some steps to efficient hand-washing:

Step 1: Rub both palms together.

Step 2: Rub the back of both hands.

Step 3: Interlace fingers and rub hands together.

Step 4: Interlock fingers and rub the back of fingers of both hands.

Step 5: Rub thumb in a rotating manner followed by the area between index finger and thumb for both hands.

Step 6: Rub fingertips on palm for both hands.

Step 7: Rub both wrists in a rotating manner.

The duration of hand-washing following the steps should be around 40-60 seconds to ensure efficacy. Always encourage your kids to wash hands before and after meals and toilet visits. Hands should also be washed before and after eye-rubbing, and when fingers are put into the mouth. Caretakers should practice hand-washing too and parents should inform the daycare centre if there is a child with HFMD.

Written by:

Ms Tan Mei Yuen has completed her diploma in nursing from SEGi university. Ms Tan then further pursued her bachelor of nursing science with honours in Open University Malaysia and majoring in Paediatric nursing, renal nursing and intensive care nursing. 7 out of 500 graduates have passed their nursing degree with distinction in nursing school, she is 1 of the 7.

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