A lot of us are washing our hands quite often these days. And while it’s great that we are — frequent handwashing is a powerful germ deterrent — all that handwashing does mean that you might discover that your hands are extra dry. Now that we’re moving into the dryer months of the year, this feels even more true. Luckily, there are plenty of handwashing tips out there.
Before we dive in, let’s talk about what happens to your hands when you wash them frequently. For starters, you can actually make it more likely that you’ll get an infection if you’re washing your hands all the time and not taking care of them afterward. Frequent hand washing can also result in hand eczema or hand dermatitis, a condition that is especially common for hairdressers, healthcare workers, mechanics, and people who handle food frequently.
In general, it’s best to wash your hands for about 20 seconds with soap and warm water. You also want to make sure you wash the backs of your hands, in between your fingers, and under your fingernails.
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