Has your neighbourhood chemist run out of sanitiser? Have you been trying to stock sanitisers and disinfectants? In the wake of the coronavirus, you are probably wanting to have enough sanitisers on hand but are you buying the correct ones? The coronavirus sanitiser must contain alcohol for it to protect you.

Many sanitisers which have labels that say it “kills 99.99% of illness causing germs” may not be what you need to protect against the COVID 19 coronavirus. Buying a sanitiser is not enough it’s important to get the right one.

Also Read: What to discuss with children regarding the coronavirus

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in United States recommends rubbing on hand sanitisers with at least 60% alcohol in case you don’t have access to soap and if you aren’t able to wash your hands.

Mothers Should Note

Mothers have increasingly been told to avoid alcohol based sanitisers for children in normal circumstances but for any protection against COVID 19 spread, CDC recommends only use of alcohol based ones. Due to the widespread concerns on coronavirus, there is a sort of frenzy across stores, chemists to buy any kind of sanitiser. This may only just be stocking up but not quite serving the purpose of protection against the novel virus.

Types of Sanitisers

By definition, Hand sanitiser which is also called hand antiseptic, handrub, or hand rub, agent applied to the hands for the purpose of removing common pathogens (disease-causing organisms). Brittanica notes, “Depending on the active ingredient used, hand sanitisers can be classified as one of two types: alcohol-based or alcohol-free. Alcohol-based products typically contain between 60 and 95 percent alcohol, usually in the form of ethanol, isopropanol, or n-propanol. At those concentrations, alcohol immediately denatures proteins, effectively neutralising certain types of microorganisms.” This is the kind being recommended for protection against coronavirus.

sanitiser shutterstock
Sanitiser Use: Credit Shutterstock

How Should You Properly Use Sanitisers

One has to use ample sanitiser and all over the hand for it to be effective. Hand sanitisers containing at least 60% alcohol can be used to get rid of germs in situations where soap and water aren’t available, according to the CDC. But it only works if you’ve used enough. Hand sanitiser should be applied to one palm before rubbing the hands together, the CDC instructs. While rubbing, the gel should be spread all over the hands and fingers, covering all surfaces until completely dry, the agency said. This process should take around 20 seconds.

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