News & Updates

How Paper Towels Can Protect You During Flu Season

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in an interview with the Associated Press,  an estimated 80,000 Americans died from the flu and its complications last winter.

To keep the flu virus at bay, we all know it is important to wash our hands with soap and water throughout the day. But did you know that a paper towel can also be your best friend when it comes to warding off bacteria and infections?

Here’s how to protect yourself from coming in contact with germs all with the help of paper towels!

 

Sanitary Tips for Public Restrooms

wall of sinks and paper towel dispensers in a public restroomThe most bacteria filled areas in a bathroom include the faucet handle, toilet handle and yes, the floor. With that being said, the best way to protect yourself would be to first make sure to dry your hands with a paper towel, not air dryer.  If you remember back in June, we solved the decade-long debate that paper towels are indeed more hygienic than hand dryers. 

There are many other ways to use paper towels to protect yourself such as:

  • Open any sanitary bins with paper towels
  • Use a paper towel to turn off the sink. (Remember, dirty hands turned it on!)
  • Then reuse that same towel to open the door (Remember, dirty hands opened that door!)

Some other restroom sanitary tips not utilizing paper towels, but still important, include:

  • Using a toilet seat cover or toilet paper to line the seat
  • Flushing the toilet with your foot
  • Washing your hands thoroughly for at least 30 seconds
    • Make it fun! Time yourself by singing “Happy Birthday” twice
    • Or check out this hand-washing video from Jimmy Kimmel Live featuring the Mayo Clinic
      • This video demonstrates how to properly wash your hands and even shares how to use paper towels to turn off the faucet, open the door and more! Proving its usefulness in keeping germs at arms length.

Sanitary Tips for the Workplace

Encourage your company to provide a sanitary environment not just during flu season, but all year long. Having disinfectants and sanitizers on hand that kill germs and bacteria in restrooms, breakrooms, entryways and other high traffic areas is key.

nurse washing hands in employee bathroom

But how can a paper towel be useful at work, you ask? Well, besides the above-mentioned bathroom uses, you can also use a paper towel to touch elevator buttons, clean the breakroom counters or disinfect your desk with spray cleaners. What is also great about paper towels is that they are disposable. Cold and flu germs can cling to fabric so if someone is sick, replacing cloth hand towels with paper towels (and also using paper cups over drinking glasses) can keep germs from hanging around!

Sanitary Tips for the Kitchen

While bathrooms get a bad rap when it comes to germs, it is actually the kitchen that harbours the most bacteria in your home. These germs can just as easily cause colds and even the flu.  WebMD reports that infections most commonly spread when germs are transferred from a contaminated item (say, your dish towel) to your hands or body (2018).

Dish towels in kitchens are used to clean countertops, wipe up messes, and dry people’s hands. Most people are not as diligent as they should be with washing or replacing these towels. With this type of poor dishrag etiquette, it really would be best to use paper towels in kitchen environments. Multi-purpose communal hand towels can be a safe haven for germs.  But when it comes to paper towels, they can be used once before being tossed right in the garbage.Three rolls of Morsoft Hardwound Towels

 

If you want to remain healthy during this tumultuous flu season, take a peek at our full guide of paper towels and dispensers and give us a call at 518-677-8511 for a free paper consultation to find the right product for your business.

 

 

 

 

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