Feb 17, 2015

Personal Hygiene in time of natural disasters like floods, haze, etc

Personal hygiene is always important and of even more utmost importance during natural disasters when the nation is surrounded by the flood or haze crisis. The need to practice the correct steps to personal hygiene has to be even more important especially for those who have loved ones based in areas affected or are volunteering because maintaining personal hygiene is one of the best methods to avoid the spread of germs and significantly lessens the risk of infections and disorders.




During a natural disaster such as a flood, our hands will often come in contact with flood water or objects exposed to the water. It is important be aware that the floodwater is contaminated with unsanitary items such as rubbish, dead animals, sewage and may even contain contaminants such as poisons. Therefore, it is advised that you wash your hands before and after activities as this will greatly reduce the spreading of germs and bacteria. Always wash your hands with clean water and soap, rub both your hands together to make lather and scrub the front, back, between the fingers, and under fingernails. After scrubbing, rinse off the soap using clean water and dry off using a clean tower or air-drying your hands.

If tap water or water source is unsafe, wash hands with soap and water that has been boiled or disinfected. Hand sanitizer is also an easy and effective way to keep your hands protected from germs however ensure that your hands are not too dirty which will render the hand sanitizer ineffective.

It is important to ensure that our bodies do not become a haven for germs and bacteria amongst the floodwater. Bathing after a flood should only be done with clean, safe water. However, water not safe for drinking can be used for bathing. When bathing, make sure to wash those hard to reach areas to prevent a clot of dirty from forming.



Brush your teeth and gems with only clean water to prevent the formation of germs and bacteria in your mouth. It is important to ensure that your toothbrush also be rinsed thoroughly with safe clean water.

If you have obtained an open wound, tend to your wound immediately. Obtaining wounds and injuries during natural disasters are common hence treating any injuries is of importance to ensure that the condition of it does not worsen, and that germs and viruses do not infect others.

If there are open cuts or sores, keep them as clean as possible by washing well with soap and clean water to control the infection. It is advised to seek immediate medical attention if the wound develops redness, swelling, or drainage.



Gathering all the necessities needed during these times into one place saves you the trouble and time of finding it when you need it the most. Try your best to prepare a kit which contains basic necessities including hygiene supplies which you can carry around with you.

If you are unsure of water cleanliness, it is always better to ensure that it is clean by killing the germs and bacteria in it. Collect water in a clean container and boil the water or disinfect it using disinfectants and filter the residues in it.

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