The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is having a big impact on our daily lives. Our anxiety levels with regard to our health and the health of our loved ones are elevated. Now more than ever it is vital to not only take care of our mental health but also to follow the health expert’s advice and regularly wash our hands.
HOW TO PROPERLY WASH YOUR HANDS
Washing our hands is something we learn at an early age, but the vast majority of us aren’t doing it correctly and thus we are unwittingly propagating the spread of infection on a day-to-day basis. The HSE website has a simple guide and video on how we should all be washing our hands. If you are unsure, here are the simple steps to cleaning your hands appropriately.
- Wet your hands with warm water and apply soap.
- Rub your hands together until the soap forms a lather.
- Rub the top of your hands, between your fingers and under your fingernails.
- Do this for a minimum of 20 seconds.
- Rinse your hands under running water.
- Dry your hands with a clean towel or paper towel.
VOYA’s Spearmint & Rosemary Soap Bar and Clean Me Up Hand Wash, and Cleanest Touch Hand Cleanser, contain a number of natural antibacterial agents including cedarwood oil, lemon peel oil, lavender oil and clove bud oil which can both clean your hands and soothe and moisturise the skin. Remember that if you are using a bar soap you should limit it to one bar per individual in the household during this time of heightened hygiene requirements. And where possible wash your hands rather than using hand sanitizer as it is more effective at removing the virus.
PROTECT DRY & IRRITATED HANDS
Unfortunately, all the additional hand washing and the use of hand sanitizers can have the adverse effect of drying out our skin. It is important to take the additional step of keeping them moisturised, as cracked hands are more susceptible to skin infections. Hand lotions/emollients work by locking in existing moisture, so the ideal time to apply them is after washing when the skin is most hydrated.
Handy to Have, Reparative Hand Cream contains a powerful blend of vitamins, antioxidants, and seaweed extracts. It works to protect the skin by locking in moisturiser, its non-oily texture makes it perfect for protecting hands day-to-day.
PRACTICE SOME SELFCARE
But most of all please remember to try and stay calm during these uncertain times. If it is possible, treat this period of social isolation as a time for self-care and compassion. Perhaps consider taking a break from social media and news stations which can at times feel overwhelming. Uninstall social apps from your phone, disable notifications, mute panicked WhatsApp groups etc. Instead, read a book, listen to your favourite music, or podcast and only check in to your government health website once a day to get the facts without the hype. If you can, try some yoga, meditation or breathing exercises, there are excellent apps out there such as Calm for guided mediation. Try and eat a balanced diet and stay hydrated. And most of all talk to your loved ones, laugh, and remember, this too shall pass.