Have you ever felt embarrassed because of your breath or body odor? Do you often feel self-conscious about how clean your clothes are? The primary purpose of personal hygiene is to improve the quality of life by reducing the risk of disease. There are five key elements that contribute to good hygiene: hand washing, tooth brushing, bathing or showering, the use of skin products, and maintaining clean living conditions. There are so many little things that can be done to become more hygienic.
Wash Your Hands
Preventing bacterial contamination of food by washing hands is one of the most important practices of personal hygiene. Make sure to wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, especially after touching raw meat or animal products, uncooked foods, dirty items, pets’ waste, or cleaning supplies.
Wear Your Hair Up
Having long, loose hair increases the number of bacteria that will be transferred into your mouth during head nods, jaw thrusts/jumps, etc. When your hair is down, bacteria from your scalp will be transferred to your food and onto objects you touch. By having your hair up in a bun, braid, ponytail, or other tight styles, the likelihood decreases that contamination of foods and objects will occur.
Brush Your Teeth Often
The first method is to brush your teeth right after you wake up or before going to bed. This will kill any bacteria. Brushing your teeth thoroughly, after meals, and before bed will help clean food debris from your mouth. This will reduce or eliminate bad breath.
It’s normal to have bad breath when you awake in the morning or after eating pungent foods. However, if your breath has a strong odor throughout the day it could be a sign of gum disease or poor oral hygiene. Gum disease can lead to tooth loss, but it can also cause symptoms such as bad breath, headaches, earache, and toothache.
The best way to prevent gum disease is by brushing twice a day for 2 minutes. People, in general, brush their teeth for only 45 seconds. Remember to brush all surfaces of your teeth including your tongue so that bacteria don’t linger. It is recommended that you visit an experienced dentist regularly to minimize possible dental problems.
Bathe or Shower Frequently Enough to Stay Clean
When bathing, wear a shower cap to protect your hair from breaking down by the chemicals in the water. It is also recommended that you use mild soaps, shampoos, and conditioners because they are designed not to irritate your skin. Do not use abrasive materials when washing, because it will dry out your skin, causing itchiness and irritation which can open pores for bacteria to enter.
Dry off properly after each time you bathe or shower to prevent fungi from spreading on moist areas of the body. Make sure that you dry all areas including underarms, behind knees and legs, and groin area.
Take Care of Your Skin
Apply a small, pea-sized amount of hand and body lotion to your skin whenever they feel dry or itchy. Using moisturizers will help retain the moisture in your skin which helps to prevent cracking. Also, wear gloves when washing dishes, cleaning bathrooms, and other chores that cause you to handle bleach or detergent because these chemicals can irritate your skin.
There are many types of skincare products available in stores such as make-up removers, facial cleansers, toners, exfoliants, and creams for minimizing pores and cleaning your skin.
Never Rinse with Alcohol-Based Mouthwash
One reason why you can’t rinse with alcohol-based mouthwash is that it dries out the mucous membranes in your mouth. Alcohol-based mouthwash becomes increasingly toxic when ingested or applied to broken skin.
Alcohol-based mouthwash also contains ethyl alcohol and ethanol which can be absorbed through tissue in your gums, and thin skin in your cheeks and lips if swallowed. Alcohol is a drug that depresses brain activity; this means that whenever you swallow it, your body will react as if it has taken a sedative or prescription medication that slows down brain activity resulting in impaired judgment and coordination. Swallowing too much of this product could therefore lead to hazardous situations.
Use a Deodorant
If you are physically active, have skipped a bath or shower, or are under stress the amount of perspiration that your body creates will increase. This can lead to odor due to bacteria breaking down the sweat. There are commercial deodorants available for purchase but if none of them work, try using baking soda as a natural remedy to reduce body odor.
Clean Your Room Often
Keeping your room clean is one of the simplest ways to keep yourself more hygienic. It shall be cleaned daily, including trash and stains that may contain bacteria or dirt that can cause illness. Dust accumulates on furniture and bedspread, causing respiratory problems. Bacteria love moist environments; therefore the sheets and pillows may become contaminated with them. Wash your sheets weekly to remove any bacteria.
Being more hygienic is important to prevent bacteria from entering your body, which can lead to health problems. Proper hygiene also reduces the risk of contracting an infection. Bathe or shower frequently enough to stay clean; take care of your skin; dry off properly after each time you bathe or shower; apply a moisturizer, and clean your environment.
Meta title: Guide to Achieving and Maintaining Good Personal Hygiene
meta desc: By maintaining good personal hygiene, you’re not only protecting your own health, but also the people around you. Read on to learn how you can stay fresh and clean, and look your best.