Since you were a child, you may have been accustomed to washing your hands before eating or after traveling. However, do you know what the best water temperature is the most effective for cleaning germs and bacteria that stick to your hands? Which is cleaner, wash your hands with cold water or warm water? Here is the answer from experts!
Is it true that germs and bacteria are easier to get rid of with warm water?
Many people believe that washing hands with warm water and hot water is more effective at killing germs and bacteria that cause disease. Because, since childhood, you may have been told that foreign organisms such as bacteria, viruses, and germs will die if exposed to hot temperatures. This is why cooking food until it is fully cooked can prevent diseases caused by bacterial and viral infections.
But what about the germs and bacteria that are in the hand? Can cold water clean your hands thoroughly? Apparently according to the researchers, cold water is as effective as warm water and hot water to eradicate bacteria. So it doesn't matter what temperature the water is used for washing hands.
A study from Rutgers University in the United States (US) revealed that hand washing with a temperature of 15 degrees, 26 degrees, to 38 degrees Celsius was the same effect. In this experiment, experts gave Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria to the hands of the study participants. Participants are then asked to wash their hands with different water temperatures.
The result, both cold water, warm water and hot water can both kill and expel the bacteria properly. So, you don't need to worry if you can't wash your hands with warm water. Cold water is enough, really.
Not an important water temperature, but the duration
In addition to testing the water temperature that is effective at cleaning hands, research by experts at Rutgers University in the Journal of Food Protection also tested the most effective hand washing methods.
According to health experts who are members of this study, it is not the temperature of the water that affects the cleanliness of your hands, but the length of time you wash your hands. Washing hands with soap for 30 seconds proved to be far more effective in expelling germs and bacteria in the hand. Whereas if you wash your hands with soap in just 15 seconds, there are still many bacteria that stick to your hands. This is why you are recommended to wash your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds.
As for the best soap for hand washing, experts agree that ordinary soap is enough to clean germs and bacteria. You don't need to use special antibacterial or antiseptic soap. Because according to various studies and clinical trials, antibacterial soap is actually no more potent than ordinary soap. Don't forget to dry your hands with a clean cloth or tissue.
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