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Does Hand Sanitizer Kill Coronavirus?

Hand Sanitiser does it kill coronavirus?
This article will cover what I believe to be the main questions covering “Does hand Sanitiser kill the Coronavirus?” Does it work and when should I use it? 
The simple truth is washing hands is better than using hand sanitizer, but we don't always have access to soap and running water.  With that said yes it does kill the Coronavirus. Ultimately whether you decide to wash your hands or use a sanitiser both methods will help prevent the spread of this terrible disease.
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Hand Sanitiser Why?
It is the most convenient method to clean your hands when on the move, no running water or towels needed. The real problem is if you don't use your hand sanitiser correctly it becomes a waste of time and ineffective at killing bacteria, so please ensure when using hand sanitizer that you use it correctly. Remember its better to over use hand sanitiser than use too little. 

How does Hand Sanitiser work? 
As hand sanitizer tends to be used on the go, it needs to be effective without running water and towels to dry hands. Hence most hand sanitisers contain ethyl alcohol, isopropyl alcohol or both so it will clean and kill bacteria and viruses on your hands and dry quickly. It has been scientifically proven that alcohol kills viruses by breaking down the protective proteins surrounding their membranes. 
It is recommended that for the hand sanitiser to be effective that it contains a concentration of at least 60%.This is not to say that lower concentrations are bad its just that they are not as effective at killing germs. Basically the higher the alcohol percentage the more effective the hand sanitiser becomes at killing germs, rather than reducing bacterial growth. 

Hand Washing V hand sanitizer which one?
If you wash and scrub your hands thoroughly with hot water and soap this is far more effective than hand sanitiser according to WHO “World Health Organisation” WHO says that washing your hands with anti-bacterial soap and hot water is a much better way to remove certain viruses and bacteria such as the Noravirus (Stomach bug) or “Cryptosporidium” Diarrhoea to us normal folk.
The main reason hand sanitiser is not as effective as washing hands is people often don't use hand sanitiser correctly. This is because people often wipe their hands way to early not allowing the hand sanitizer to dry out completely. Add to that, if your hands are already very dirty or covered in grease hand sanitisers may not work as effectively. It is difficult for the sanitiser to penetrate heavy dirt and grease like soap and water. 

When should hand sanitizer be used?
It is recommended by WHO to use hand sanitiser as an alternative when you have no access to soap and water. It also recommended not to use hand sanitiser with greasy hands try and use hand soap and water. 
Hand sanitizer used in conjunction with free standing hands free sanitiser dispensers are ideal for use in the hospitals and healthcare environments where hygiene is of the up most importance. It is just as important to use hand sanitizer after a visit, as it is entering a healthcare facility as this can help prevent the unnecessary spread of diseases. 

Do hand sanitizers protect from viruses?
Hand sanitizer will protect you from bacterial and viral infections provided they are used correctly in the right situation. Basically you should apply a hand sanitiser containing at least 60% alcohol as per directions on the label. Most will tell you to apply to hands ensuring you cover all the hand and rub in well, allowing to dry completely before touching anything. 
Remember hand sanitiser is recommended for use within the healthcare industry, as its shown to reduce the spread of hospital bourne bacteria and viruses i.e. MRSA the hospital superbug. 
But a word of caution research has shown hand sanitizer to be less effective against the Norovirus and flu than hand washing. Although the evidence is not conclusive so we would still recommend using hand sanitizer when soap and water is unavailable. 

Are there other ways to protect ourselves from illness? 
As well as regular hand washing and sanitizing to help our immune system stay fit and ready to fight off any viral attack it helps: If we get enough exercise, sleep, hydration and of course a well balanced diet. 
Good hygiene practice is something everyone should participate in not just after using the bathroom, handling rubbish, before and after eating, touching animals (humans included), touching objects, foreign surface the list goes on. So get into the habit of hand sanitising and do it several times a day. 
But don't stop at hand hygiene there is plenty of other things aside personal hygiene we should include: Keeping all surfaces at home and work thoroughly cleaned and disinfected using professional cleaner sanitisers such as Dimex. After cleaning surfaces it is important we dispose or sterilise any contaminated cleaning cloths, disposable paper towels or single us products would be better to use when a disease is highly contagious. 
Other things we can do is follow guidelines from your national health authority which  include: If you do go out try and wear protective masks and disposable gloves to reduce the risk of spreading infection. Practice social distancing, 2 meters is recommended. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth and if you do cough or sneeze please do so into tissues and dispose of into a bin, don't just throw them away. Finally STAY at HOME to help avoid the spread of infection to friends, family and others. 
The above are our recommendations and a guideline only. They are meant as an educational and informative article not for medical or health advice.