Eerie Blacklight Image Shows the Importance of Proper Hand-Washing

It really is the simplest thing you can do to stay safe and healthy.
ByNehal Aggarwal
Associate Editor
Published
Mar 2020
little girl drying her hands after washing them in the kitchen
Photo: Marilyn Nieves / Getty Images

There’s a good chance you’ve heard “wash your hands with soap and water” in the last day or so. With constant news hitting about the coronavirus COVID-19, good hygiene is at the top of mind for everyone—including actress Kristen Bell.

The actress recently used her platform to boost one of the simplest precautions the CDC recommends taking, washing your hands properly and frequently. On Instagram last week, the actress posted an image showing blacklight photos of the impact of various degrees of hand-washing. The six images show hands before washing, washing briefly without soap, washing briefing with soap and washing for a full 30 seconds with soap. The difference is astounding.

“My mom sent me the hand washing black light comparison,” Bell wrote in the caption. “30 SECONDS WITH SOAP YALL!!!”

The post is resonating with her followers. “And now I am going to wash my hands with a 30 second timer,” one person wrote, while another commented, “And don’t forget under your fingernails!” Yet another commented, “Just shared this with my students and made them wash their hands and write the steps.”

According to public health experts, proper hand-washing is a precaution that can help prevent a variety of diseases—not just COVID-19—and is a practice that should be part of everyday life. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), proper hand-washing redacted respiratory illness, like colds, in the general population by 16 to 21 percent.

The CDC recommends washing your hands with clean, running water and soap for at least 20 seconds, making sure to scrub under your fingernails, as well. Not sure how long 20 seconds is? Sing the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice. To learn more information about COVID-19 precautions and proper hand-washing techniques, visit the CDC’s website.

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