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What's the best way to keep my hands clean?

Dawn Marcus
Neurology
What’s the best way to keep our hands clean and free from disease-spreading germs? Just washing with plain old soap and water! Microbiologists at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill tested 14 hand washing products. They tested regular non-antimicrobial soap, special antibacterial soaps, hand wipes, and hand rubs or hand sanitizers you use without rinsing with water. Everything was used for just 10 seconds of use. In their study, nothing worked better than regular soap and water -- including special antibacterial soaps. Interestingly, more costly hand wipes and sanitizers didn’t kill as many germs as the plain soap and water! But remember -- soap alone won’t kill germs. Soap lifts germs off of your skin so they can be rinsed away with water, which is why you need both soap and water! And just 10 seconds of washing was enough to get rid of over 9 in every 10 germs on your hands!

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.