How Can Washing Hands Help Prevent Diarrhea?


The data is enough to highlight how important it is to integrate hygiene practices like washing hands in our lives as effective preventive measures.

Hands are used in almost every activity we perform throughout the day. Washing them rigorously is the cornerstone of maintaining good hygiene. And hygiene has never harmed anyone! Knowingly or unknowingly we get in contact with a lot of germs and these are carriers of many infections along with troublesome conditions like diarrhea.


To protect against a wide range of diseases like pneumonia, diarrhea and more, washing hands is the most pocket-friendly method. We prepare, eat food, touch a public place, and touch and handle things that many people previously handled, treat wounds, care for a sick person and do much more with our hands.

Thanks to the pandemic, the significance of washing hands was spread broadly, but did we take it seriously? According to UNICEF, people, especially men, do not use hygiene facilities consistently (2 Trusted Source

Go to source). There is a dire need for impactful political support and behaviorist change interventions to spread awareness for sizable improvements in this direction.

Diarrhea and Washing Hands

Germs like Salmonella, norovirus, and E. coli O157 are responsible for diarrhea. These are also important sources of feces from people or animals. They have the capacity to spread respiratory infections like hand-foot-mouth disease and adenovirus.

The germs can easily get on the hands of people and spread when using the toilet or doing any other activity. Around 1.8 million children under the age of five lose their lives every year due to diarrheal diseases and pneumonia (3 Trusted Source
Diarrheal Disease

Go to source). These are the top reasons why kids end up in fatal situations around the world

Such a lack of facilities is highly problematic for children. Half of the schools have a paucity of hand washing facilities with soap and water. Also, there is a lack of hygiene facilities, especially soap and water to wash hands at places providing health care facilities. These places have a high chance of catching viral bacteria and other contamination. If there is no proper hygiene maintained here, serious consequences and even fatal outcomes can happen.

One should take responsibility for understanding the key timings and duration of washing hands. Awareness regarding hand hygiene in the home and community needs to be implemented to spread the message as much as possible. Health promotional materials along with the resources to wash hands should be distributed in remote areas and educational institutions. Soap, sanitizers and other materials come under the resources.

The government and healthcare authorities can come together to develop handwashing policies, strategies and action plans. India is almost the leading country in terms of population at the moment. Hence, it is impossible to reach every nook and corner of the country to spread awareness. Thanks to digitization!

Digitization can reach everywhere throughout the world. Effective messages on government, as well as healthcare online platforms, can make a big difference. Making services accessible to the most vulnerable is the foundation of achieving this goal.

Failing to plan is planning to fail. A country with massive diversity needs strict measures to come out of the traditional beliefs, social stigma and financial issues in order to take action for healthy citizens. Children suffer more than anyone due to the lack of hygiene.

Their bodies are not ready to deal with harsh conditions and vulnerability at a very young age makes it much more complicated for them to battle. Keeping them clean and encouraging hygiene habits in them is the first step to saving them from a wide range of diseases.

References :

  1. Diarrheal diseases among children in India – (

  2. Handwashing- (

  3. Diarrheal Disease – (

Source: IANS

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