An important step you can take to prevent norovirus is to wash your hands thoroughly and often, especially after coming in contact with a common source of contamination and before and after food preparation, serving, and handling.
To prevent norovirus, it's important that you wash your hands the right way!
The NoroCORE team at North Carolina State University recommends the following hand-washing protocol:
- Wet your hands with clean, running water.
- Apply soap and rub hands together to form lather and scrub well.
- Scrub and rub hands for at least 20 seconds. Getting lather on the back and front of hands, on the palms, between the fingers and underneath nails.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel. Preferably single-use as virus particles may end up on the towel.
- Use a towel to turn off the faucet.
Hum the song "Twinkle, Twinkle" while scrubbing your hands with soap
To make sure you're washing for the recommended 20 seconds and teach your children to do it too!
Suprisingly, research has shown that whether the water is hot or cold when you wash your hands makes no difference, according to Dr. Ben Chapman from the NoroCORE Team.
Dr. Chapman also recommends using paper towels to dry your hands and skipping the air dryers. The friction created by drying with a towel can help remove any particles that remain on hands after a post-wash rinse. Warm air hand dryers have also been shown to be source of transmitting microorganisms.