How to use hand sanitizer properly: dos and don’ts

Before Covic-19 afflicted the world, not everyone was using hand sanitizers. Some people did not even know what they are, but the pandemic has made sanitizers, sanitization, and sanitize household terms.

Manufacturers are always making different products to make life easier, but traditional ways of doing things such as hand washing are still important in our day-to-day life. One of the measures that WHO announced to help in curbing the spread of Coronavirus was using hand sanitizers.

However, this week, the CAS (Chief Administrative Secretary) for the Ministry of Health Mercy Mwangangi noted that there is an overreliance on sanitizers in the country. She, therefore, urged citizens to wash their hands whenever possible instead of using hand sanitizers.

In that regard, it is crucial to understand when and how to use hand sanitizers to help lower the spread of the virus.


The dos

Use a hand sanitizer when you do not have access to water and soap. However, according to the CDC (Centre for Disease Control and Prevention), you can also use sanitizers after washing your hands for added protection.

Apply the product to the palm of one hand. Make sure you pour the right amount, which should be on the label. If not, use an amount enough to cover both hands. After applying on one palm, rub the product over all surfaces of your hands including your wrist and in between your fingers until your hands dry.

However, when you are not busy, for example, when relaxing on the couch, you do not have to rub the sanitizer on your hands. The CDC says you can cover all surfaces of both hands without rubbing and get a similar disinfection that rubbing provides. Nevertheless, the rubbing action helps disintegrate the structure of the Coronavirus

The CDC explains that the sanitizer you use should be 60-95% alcohol based for effective killing of germs such viruses. When you use products with lower alcohol levels than recommended, they may not be effective in killing many types of germs or they might merely reduce germ growth instead of killing them outright.


The don’ts

Do not use a hand sanitizer in place of washing your hands with running water and soap. Water and soap reduce and kill all types of germs and chemicals on your hands. Besides, do not use a sanitizer with soap and water; do not use it while washing your hands with soap and water.

Wash your hands after handling food, playing a sport, or handling chemicals. Water and soap will remove the dirt. Do not use sanitizers after handling food or playing a sport. Your hands will be greasy or dirty, and washing hands your will efficiently eliminate the mess.

Besides, if your hands are visibly soiled or you have been handling chemicals, do not use a sanitizer.

Never swallow alcohol-based hand sanitizers. If your swallows several mouthfuls, you get alcohol poisoning.


While some of the do and don’ts of using hand sanitizers sound obvious, it is essential to know how to use the products properly to boost effectiveness and avoid wastage.

See also: Update on Coronavirus as 81 deaths reported in China

Related Stories

More Stories from Lifestyle