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Don’t Forget Your Mask and Sanitizer!
Don’t Forget Your Mask and Sanitizer!
30th July 2020 - by Christina Hyde
Why it is important to protect your face and hands during COVID-19

As a nation, we have hit several unexpected rough patches this year especially since the arrival of the coronavirus. Before the virus, I did not think much of it when I was sick, instead of taking a day off, I would simply take some medicine and continue with my day. Unless I was tremendously sick, I would be at work. You could find me walking around the office with a box of kleenex and hand sanitizer. Now the times have changed, my reaction to going in public sick or being around others who are sick is not the same. 

The nation’s reaction since the virus has changed dramatically too. Even having the slightest cold or fever is now a threat to others and a reason you have to stay home. Since it can take 2 to 14 days to see symptoms of the virus it can be scary going out in public even when you are feeling well. However, we can not stay in the house forever. We must go out for essentials, get a breath of fresh air, and socialize with our close family and friends. 

If you’re like me, you worry about your child’s risk of contracting COVID-19, especially when returning to the school this fall. Luckily for parents, there are two easy ways you can protect your family when in public locations.

washing hands, face mask, germs

Scrub Those Germs Away

We touch hundreds of surfaces each day, without thinking, and then end up touching our own face and body. Germs can survive for up to three hours on your hands and up to a full day on hard surfaces. Touching surfaces or objects may not be the direct way to catch the virus but it is a contributing factor of exposure. That is why it is important to wash your hands constantly throughout the day to prevent the Coronavirus, as well as respiratory and diarrheal infections. 

Parents one way to teach your children the importance of washing your hands is by an experiment. This experiment involves 4 materials, a plate, water, pepper, and soap. In this experiment, you will pour water onto the plate and a great amount of pepper in the water. From there have your child stick their finger in peppered or germed water then compare it to when they stick their finger in after applying soap. They’ll be shocked by the difference a little soap can make! Check out this video for a visual demonstration.

`It is important to wash your hands but sometimes when we are out in public we may not have the resources to wash our hands. However, an easy alternative to hand washing is hand sanitizer. Alcohol concentrated hand sanitizer kills up to 99.9% germs within 30 seconds of application. Go to your local supermarket and pick up some portable hand sanitizer to keep in your car and purse. Keep in mind that while hand sanitizer is a great alternative it does not mean we should eliminate washing hands.

Protecting Your Face

When we walk outside and go into public settings you may see quite a few people wearing masks or see that certain establishments are requiring facial covering before entering. While wearing a mask may not coordinate with our fashionable outfits, it is still important to wear them.  Because Covid-19 spreads mainly by an infected person’s respiratory droplets when they talk, cough, or sneeze, cloth face coverings slow the spread of the virus. The spread is minimized due to the fact that face masks shield your mouth and nose; so when you are talking to someone in close proximity their droplets will have difficulty landing in your mouth, nose, or being inhaled.

family wearing face masks

Parents, now you may be wondering,  “Does my child have to wear a mask too?” The answer is yes. According to the CDC guidelines, people older than 2 years of age should wear a mask in areas social distancing is difficult to maintain.  Face coverings are needed to protect the little ones too, so they can stay nice and healthy. It is important to model this behavior yourself and encourage your children to wear a mask. Sit down and have a conversation with your child about why wearing a face mask is important. If your child resists wearing one, consider letting them pick their own cute cloth mask or help them make their own!

As the nation moves forward with Covid-19 we have to adapt to the new normal. Children may not find it fun to wash their hands often or wear a face mask, but we must teach them the importance of it. We also must practice these new standards ourselves to lead by example. We want to see your little one conquer the world one day so let's keep them healthy and protected during this pandemic.

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