Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Infection Prevention Week

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Nurse Diane

Recently a friend of mine was moving a freezer with his son.  His son's finger got trapped between the wall and the freezer, causing him to suffer a severe cut and required stitches from the emergency room.   My friend was worried about the possibility of infection getting in the cut, afraid that his son was not concerned about the proper care of his injury.  I gave him instructions on how to clean the wound and change the dressing, and his finger is healing nicely.

The best way to prevent infection is cleaning.  This applies to wounds as well as preventing the spread of colds.  The number one way to prevent the spread of infections is proper hand washing.  Just using soap and water, and a little friction and cleaning the nail beds will prevent the spreading of germs.

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There has been some discussion that the use of Anti-bacterial soap will cause the mutation of germs that are resistant to these agents.  The growth of Super germs has been discussed in the media.  Science is constantly evolving to combat these organisms to continue to stop the spread of infections.

Some important things to remember are:
  • Wash your hands with soap before and after handling food
  • Wash your hands when you use the bathroom
  • Wash after playing with animals
  • Wash your hands after touching door knobs or grocery cart handles
  • Cover your mouth when coughing
  • Use a Kleenex or handkerchief for sneezing
  • Keep hands away from your eyes and mouth
  • Keep open wounds clean and covered.

I also encourage people in areas with small children or where groups of people gather, to use Lysol to kill germs, especially during the cold and flu season.

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This week is Infection Prevention week.  Remember to wash your hands, especially if you are ill, and do your part to prevent the spread of infection to others around you.

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