New postcard: wash those hands folks!

Soap + H2O = Nice

Soap + H2O = Nice

 

Hope you enjoy this one! Easy way to be nice, isn’t it? ūüôā

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice. (somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.

Cleanliness is kindness

This post is in conjunction with the release of my newest postcard about washing hands. I thought up the postcard awhile ago, but it seems appropriate that it is being released now during the beginning of flu season.  Washing your hands is a conscientious thing to do in these germy times. While I do think some things take it too far (like anti-bacterial body wash and facial tissues), basic cleanliness and caution is always advisable. You never know if the person standing next to you might have some condition that makes them susceptible to illness, and while you may feel healthy, you may still have yucky germy-things that can make others sick.

Case-in-point: at my job, there is a woman who sits nearby that never covers her mouth when she coughs or sneezes. And she does it a lot!¬† Imagine all the germs that may be flung into the air each time she sneezes!¬† Or the women that leave the bathroom without washing their hands at work. EW.¬†I¬†know a person¬†who is allergic to¬†the¬†hand soap in her work restroom, so she brings her own. Now¬†that is considerate!¬†So these¬†non-handwashers have no excuse, wouldn’t you say?

But I think many of us believe that simply¬†running our hands under some water (sans soap) will clean them up. This is not the case. My friend Mandy, a medical professional,¬†explained to me that it is the friction that comes with hand-washing (plus the warm water and soap) that frees up the spores and whatnot attached to our skin, which makes our hands clean.¬†This is the purpose behind the¬†15 second rule for hand washing. I had no idea. I thought that was a rule made up to get people to wash in general (ask for 15 seconds, and you’ll get the 5 seconds necessary–seemed to make sense). So I guess we all better do a stand-up job at hand washing. Remember, you can get yourself sick too by touching some communal item and then touching your face! Cleanliness helps everyone!

Below I have attached the CDC guidelines for proper hand washing. You can find the info here. For a cuter website with an awesome rubber ducky in its heading, check this link out: washinghands.net. This website is a great resource for all things handwashing related!

Steps to proper handwashing…

  1. Hands should be washed using soap and warm, running water
  2. Hands should be rubbed vigorously during washing for at least 20 seconds with special attention paid to the backs of the hands, wrists, between the fingers and under the fingernails
  3. Hands should be rinse well while leaving the water running
  4. With the water running, hands should be dried with a single-use towel
  5. Turn off the water using a paper towel, covering washed hands to prevent re-contamination.

 

Hands should be washed after the following activities:

  • After touching bare human body parts other than clean hands and clean, exposed portions of arms
  • After using the toilet
  • After coughing, sneezing, using a handkerchief or disposable tissue, using tobacco, eating or drinking
  • After handling soiled equipment or utensils
  • After food preparation, as often as necessary to remove soil and contamination and to prevent cross-contamination when changing tasks
  • After switching between working with raw food and working with ready-to-eat food
  • After engaging in other activities that contaminate the hands.

 

Note:  The VSP does not endorse the use of hand sanitizers in lieu of handwashing with soap and warm, running water.  Hand sanitizers containing 60-90% ethyl alcohol or isopropanol in concentration with equivalent sanitizing strength, may be used as an adjunct to proper handwashing.

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice. (somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.

Compassion and illness

I visited a friend of mine in the hospital the other day–she had elective surgery and had no one to visit her that afternoon. So I popped by with a girlfriend of mine and brought some flowers to cheer up the room. It sure made a difference to her too, she was smiling ear to ear.

Unfortunately, I have had a fair share of relatives and friends whose lives have been touched by illness–cancer to be specific. My grandma has loved and lost quite a few to this disease. I asked her once if there was anything I could do for someone we care dearly about who is fighting it. She said something very wise:

Visiting the sick is very important. It helps the person¬†heal, or deal with their situation. But visiting can be tiring for the sick, too. It takes a lot of energy to chat with someone when so much of his/her strength is being used to fight an internal battle. Grandma suggested, when visiting someone,¬† that we try to provide a service as well.¬†For example,¬†bring a ready-made snack and clean up afterward. Insist on taking care of the dirty dishes. Pick up some groceries on your way over. Sweep up some crumbs. Take out the trash. Fold up the blankets. Weed the¬†garden. Mow the yard. Fill the bird feeder.¬†Offer to help out in a way that contributes without taking away the person’s pride and sense of independence.¬†

A lot of times, this might include helping the person’s caretaker/loved one. It is hard for the loved one to be strong all the time for the person who is ill. Sometimes they might need a break from the dishes or the cooking. Offering your help may be all they need to feel supported and loved. Suggesting something specific is often a surefire way of ensuring your contribution is taken seriously. Just make sure that when you offer it, you mean it.

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice.(somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.

And in honor of Wiping the Seatie…

So I was telling this friend of mine the other day about toilet seats and the lack of wiping going around, and she said the main perpetuaters were “hover girls”. And I have to say I love this phrase and I have to agree. So here is my thought:

Hover girls are afraid of germs on the seat, so they are afraid of sitting on the seat. What germs are they afraid of? The pee speckles that get there from the bad aiming and the girls that hover! AKA: them.

So, really, these hover girls are the reason for their problem! Because if they would stop peeing all over the seat, perhaps they wouldn’t be so freaked out to sit on it! And I’m not saying that a good layer of toilet paper isn’t in order when we sit on the seat (because it is: urine is sterile, skin is not), but I am saying, “Jeez! The irony!”¬† Hover girls are self-perpetuating hypochondriacs!!!!\

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice. (somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.  

Be Nice. to the environment and yourselves

There are a lot of ways to be nice to people. And we’ve heard a lot about being nice to the planet. Here’s one unavoidable reason we need to start thinking about our waste and our purchases that contribute to it:

“Our Oceans Are Turning Into Plastic. Are We?” ¬†is an article that tells of the numerous ways plastic is in our bodies and in our food supply. There is an island in the Pacific made of floating plastic twice the size of Texas and growing. Tiny confetti-sized pieces of plastic float around (more numerous than the plankton the fish eat in oceans) and are eaten by fish, which are in turn eaten by humans. These little plastic pieces¬†disrupt our endocrine and reproductive cycles (among many other things).¬† It’s a long (and depressing) article, but worth the read (spread the word forward too!!!!).

Once you’re done reading, do the whole world a favor and:

  1. Buy some canvas re-usable grocery bags,  & keep them in the car to use them for shopping. They make carrying groceries easier actually and you often get a 5 cent credit for each bag you use.
  2. Buy reusable glass containers (Anchor brand makes some) instead of plastic reusable.
  3. Look in your pantry and grocery list and cease buying individually wrapped food items. Dole out the servings yourself into reusable packaging! It’s easy and saves a lot of packaging that will be around 3 times as long as we will.
  4. Check out the Green Bag Lady ¬†site and you can learn how to make your own bag or win a bag in a giveaway–and you can donate old fabric for the making of more bags!

Thanks for reading!

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice. (somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.

Soap and water

Germs are every where, this is true. Everything we touch has germs on it. But there is one place where germs seem to be on the mind: the restroom. 

So if you use the restroom, why not be considerate of others?  Wash your hands.

Perhaps you might not think you have a reason to wash them, but is washing going to be in any way detrimental to you?  It is certainly the considerate thing to do for those who have to open the door after you. If you are wary of germs on the faucets, would a container of hand sanitizer make it less worrisome?

Regardless of the arguments for or against hand washing, this seems like a common point of consideration of others, and an easy one to enact.

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice. (somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.