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Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the practice of good hand hygiene has been in the spotlight amongst some of the most important measures needed to protect yourself and others around you from spreading or catching the disease. Never before has it been so consequential to monitor your own personal hygiene and the hygiene of spaces around you. Despite all the attention given to good hand hygiene, what do you really know about it? And why is it so important?

Let’s explore a few facts about the matter that will really get you scrubbing and how Tweaq’s self cleaning door handle can help alleviate these hygiene horrors.

1) 2 to 10 million germs live on your fingertips at this very moment

There can be between 2 to 10 million germs on your fingertips at this very moment alone.[1] These vast communities of germs can survive on the surface of your hand for up to three hours and double in size every twenty minutes, with one single germ multiplying into 8 million in the space of one day. [2] Your hands are teeming with microscopic microbes at every moment of every day.

Just think about what you have touched in the last thirty minutes! Within that short space of time, the average person has come into contact with over three-hundred different surfaces and exposed their hands to an estimated 840,000 different germs. [3] Public door handles in workplaces and restaurants, for instance, can harbour millions of germs that you have unknowingly come into contact with. These germs can easily infect you so easily, as according to statistics, you have touched your own face around 23 times in that past hour without even realising.[4] Crazy, right? Nearly 80% of these germs can cause a communicable disease or illness that can be simply passed on by touch.

2) 4 out of  5 people do not wash their hands after using the bathroom

It has been found that four out of five people still do not wash their hands after using the bathroom. Of those people that do, a large majority do not use any soap. In fact, around 20 percent of people do not dry their hands after using water alone to wash their hands. These people with damp hands are 1000 times more likely to spread bacteria than people with dry hands!

Knowing that every surface you touch is covered in germs, how do you protect yourself and others from passing on germs and getting ill? Well, it is quite simple… Washing your hands! Yet a large majority of people fail to wash their hands properly. Most of the harmful pathogens live under your fingernails and on your fingertips, and the number of germs in these areas can double after a single trip to the bathroom.

Shockingly, these are the areas where most people fail to clean as they mostly clean their palms and miss everything else. It is not just the bathroom either! There are up to 7 times more germs on your phone than on your toilet seat. So, proper hand hygiene is important.[5] These people would then go onto touching other surfaces, including door handles which will then come into contact with other people and further spread the germs.

3) Soap is your best friend.

So what is the big deal with soap? Why is washing your hands without it not good enough? When it comes to hand hygiene, soap is your best friend and germs’ worst enemy. Soap creates an environment so toxic to germs that it practically tears them apart. The soap molecules act as a mediator between the water and the greasy, fat molecules that are present on your hands and what makes up the germs outer layer.

When you lather the soap up between your hands, you encourage the soap to mix with the germs and oils. It is recommended that this is done for a minimum of 20 seconds to allow the soap to fully react with the oils and pathogens so that when you rinse your hands off afterwards, the water will wash away all the germs that were previously present on your hands.

But what if you do not have soap? Hand sanitizer! Studies have found that hand sanitizers with alcohol concentrations above 60 percent are more effective at killing germs than non alcoholic or low-alcohol sanitizers.[6]They work in a similar way to soap, creating a hostile environment for germs by breaking down their microbial membranes and practically making them fall apart.

Overall, hand hygiene is integral to maintaining a good level of public health and safety. The problem is, how can you trust that everyone is making a conscious effort in their own personal hand hygiene? This is where Tweaq comes in. Tweaq reimagines the door handle. As a surface that comes into contact with numerous people, Tweaq’s Rise self cleaning door handle protects you and others around you with its automated disinfecting mechanism. After every use of the door handle, sensors enable an antibacterial solution to be dispensed onto a sponge which glides across the handle; getting rid of 99.99% of bacteria and viruses in just under 3 seconds and stopping the spread of those harmful microbes.

In the times of today when proper hand hygiene is the matter of life and death, an innovative hygiene product like Tweaq’s Rise can mean a world of difference.