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Americans’ Concern for Skin Infections, Flu, Spreads Across the Countr

ages.

? Avoid sharing personal items such as towels or razors.

And when you are around someone who has a staph infection, there are additional steps that can be taken to avoid spreading the infection to family and friends, including:

? Clean surfaces daily with an EPA-registered disinfectant according to the manufacturer’s directions, or

? Use a solution of one tablespoon of bleach mixed in one quart of water to disinfect all non-disposable items and surfaces that may have come in contact with the infected area, wound drainage, or soiled supplies.

? Wash soiled linens and clothes with hot water and laundry detergent. Dry them in a hot dryer, if possible.

? Wash utensils and dishes in the usual manner, with dish detergent and hot water or in a dishwasher.

Americans Generally Aware of Hygiene Importance in Spread of Viral Diseases

Many viral infections, such as colds, flu and gastrointestinal infections are spread through person-to-person contact or contact with contaminated surfaces. Proper handwashing is the simplest and most effective way to prevent these infections from spreading.

According to SDA’s recent survey, most Americans are aware of the numerous benefits of clean hands. A full 90 percent of respondents believe that handwashing can help reduce the spread of a viral flu pandemic, and 87 percent believe hand hygiene can be helpful in preventing the spread of a viral disease outbreak such as the avian flu.

But that same survey found that 36 percent of Americans seldom or never wash their hands after sneezing.

“This is where we need to do better,” added Bock. “Many of the germs that can make us sick are spread hand-to-hand or hand-to-surface.”

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