Stepping Up to the Sink

By: Sarah Goebel Email
By: Sarah Goebel Email

Washing your hands regularly may seem like common sense but more and more people aren't doing it.

The American Society for Microbiology finds only 77-percent of the population washes their hands after using the restroom.

That's down six-percent from a 2005 study.

We look to if South-Central Kentuckians are stepping up to the sink.

We asked the question to some travelers, "Did you wash your hands after you used the restroom?"

And the responses?



"They're still wet!"

We didn't catch anyone not washing their hands at this rest area.

"Would you tell us if you didn't wash your hands?" we asked.

"Sure, why would I lie?" one traveler responded.

If these people traveling through South-Central Kentucky are telling the truth, the rest of the nation needs to take note.

A new study shows that one-third of men and 12-percent of women aren't washing their hands after using the restroom.

"That's nasty," one traveler admitted when she heard the news.

"Hand washing is the single most effective thing you can do to prevent the spread of disease," explained Chip Kraus, with the Barren River District Health Dept.

That may sound like common sense and something we've been told since we were kids.

So why aren't people doing it?

"A lot of times people forget they need to," Kraus said.

But he added that a proper hand washing only takes about 20 seconds.

"Which is as long as it takes to sing "Happy Birthday" twice," Kraus assured.

He also added that another big reason people don't wash their hands is they think it's dirtier to use a public sink.

But that's no excuse.

"After you wash your hands, leave the water running until you get your napkin or whatever you use and before you throw it away, turn off the sink and open the door," Kraus suggested.

So there doesn't seem to be a good excuse for not washing your hands.

In fact, in the time it took to bring you this story you could have lathered up about seven times.

With the flu season coming up, it's especially important to keep your hands clean.

The Barren River District Health Dept. is giving free flu shots Oct. 6.

To get one, go to Barren County High School between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m.

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