Hand sanitizer is a liquid gel or foam generally, there are multiple uses for Herbal Hand sanitizers however it is primarily used to kill many viruses, bacteria, or microorganisms on the hands. It often happens that while traveling you want to wash your hands but do not have access to soap or water. This is when hand sanitizers come into the picture. It is used as an alternative to hand washing and comes in two main variants, those that are alcohol based and those which are not. Their use is recommended when soap and water are not available for hand washing or when repeated hand washing compromises the natural skin barrier (e.g., causing scaling or fissures to develop in the skin).
Choose the Right-Hand Sanitizer
You need to choose the right-hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizers also come in multiple variants, alcohol-based and non-alcohol-based (natural hand sanitizer or organic hand sanitizer). You should know which sanitizer suits you the best. Make sure to follow the following tips before getting yourself a hand sanitizer.
Alcohol Percentage - The amount of alcohol in the hand sanitizer is critically important and the most effective hand sanitizers consist of 60 to 80 percent alcohol by volume, so be sure to check the alcohol percentage before purchasing.
Check Alcohol Type - There are two most prominent types of alcohol isopropyl and ethanol which are used for hand sanitizers. Ethanol has been proven to be more effective than isopropyl alcohol on its own against viruses.
Extra Ingredients - Always check for extra ingredients before buying a hand sanitizer as ingredients like Aloe help to smooth the skin upon application and reduce the dryness associated with alcohol.
Select A Proven Brand - Lastly, with the increased number of brands on the market make sure to select the brand that has an established reputation for delivering performance efficiently.
Once you’ve established which hand sanitizer to buy based on the ones that suits you best or the ones you are not sensitive to, follow the stepwise guidelines mentioned below on how to use sanitizer. This is a stepwise guideline found on the official website of the World Health Organization:
Step 1: Apply a palm full of the product in a cupped hand, covering all surfaces of the palm.
Step 2: Rub hands palm to palm
Step 3: Right palm over left dorsum with interlaced fingers and vice versa
Step 4: Palm to palm with fingers interlaced
Step 5: Backs of fingers to opposing palms with fingers interlocked
Step 6: Rotational rubbing of left thumb clasped in right palm and vice versa
Step 7: Rotational rubbing, backward and forwards with clasped fingers of the right hand in the left palm and vice versa
Step 8: Once dry, your hands are safe.
Use The Right Amount Of Hand Sanitizer
In a recent study done by the American Journal Of Infection Control, it was noticed that most international standards for hand sanitizers used in healthcare settings do not take the hand size into account when recommending how much hand sanitizer is to be used, and that should not be the case.
These researchers invited 67 visitors at an infection and control conference in Switzerland to perform hand hygiene using ultraviolet light-traced hand sanitizer and check how well the sanitizer covered their hands. Three volumes of hand sanitizers were used; 1ml, 2ml, and 3ml. These researchers examined the coverage on the palms and back of 134 hands and they found that 1ml was never enough. 1ml of hand sanitizer was never sufficient for effective hand hygiene, even if the person had a small hand.
Findings also suggested that 3ml was ideal for people with small to medium size hands, but it was not sufficient to cover the palms and back of the hands of people with larger hands. The study concluded that “The volume of sanitizer applied needs to be adapted to the hand size if both palm and dorsum are to be covered.”
Apply Hand Sanitizer Correctly
People often do not make full use of sanitizer and falter while applying them. They are instructed to take an adequate amount of hand sanitizer as mentioned in the bottle and measure depending upon their palm sizes, cover all surfaces with both hands, and cover both the back and the front of their hand and in-between fingers until the hands are dry.
Storing Hand Sanitizer
Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are generally flammable especially if they contain a high concentration of alcohol (Above 60%). Nevertheless, the risk of flammability is low if the hand sanitizer is used to store properly.
Alcohol-containing hand sanitizers should be stored in cool places. They should not be kept in places near open flames and heat, particularly for those in higher volumes (more than 100ml). Always ensure that the lids and caps of the hand sanitizers are properly sealed. This is to prevent leakage into other items (eg: pockets, clothes, bags, vehicles, and bedding) which may later become potential fire hazards. Storing hand sanitizer greater than 10 gallons requires a flammable storage permit.
Hand Sanitizer Safety
If you use alcohol-based hand sanitizers, keep this safety tip in mind.
- Keep them out of reach of pets and children.
- Be careful not to get them in your eyes as they can be damaging to the surface of the eye.
- Use them in a well-ventilated area.
- Children should use it under adult supervision
- It is a flammable item and should be handled with utmost care.