Now in the face of covid-19, business hygiene and sanitization matters more than ever, and is a great time to review how germ free your washrooms, kitchens and other places staff wash their hands are.
Even when the crisis of this horrible virus is ‘over’, it will never disappear completely, so hygiene at your workplace should now be paramount, and under constant review.
Let’s talk washroom hygiene – what do you use: a paper towel or an electric hand dryer? Or do you wipe your hands on your jeans and walk out the door? Hand dryers are designed to dry hands: not save the environment. But there are other issues in bathrooms, such as hygiene. Besides from being the most environmentally friendly option, not producing greenhouse emissions like hot hand driers, find out why our eco paper towels are the best way to prevent the spread of bacteria, and why so many health officials are now recommending the use of hand towels…
Paper towels easily stop nasties spreading, just wipe and drop them in the bin. Jet hand dryers, not so much. And there is reams of evidence to prove it.
Sure, they might quickly sweep the water off your hands, but in doing so, can also blast off any lingering microbes that dodged the hand washing process into the air, said Mark Wilcox, a medical microbiologist at the University of Leeds.
“There are bugs even on well-washed hands, but poorly washed hands have lots of bugs,” Professor Wilcox said. “They’re splattered onto surfaces, into the air, onto you, onto people waiting behind you to use the dryer.”
The worst, he added, is when someone waves their hands under running water for a second or two, then goes to dry them. Hands obviously need washing properly for 20 seconds with a high quality soap for starters. Warm hand dryers might encourage microbes to grow because they provide a nice, toasty environment.
When jet hand dryers were used, MRSA (a nasty super bug that is resistant to many antibiotics) popped up three times more often in the UK hospital, and total bacterial levels on the dryers were up to 30 times higher across all the sites compared to bacteria on paper towel dispensers.
“From an infection prevention point of view, it goes against the grain to spread bugs around when there’s an alternative that doesn’t spread them around anywhere near as much,” Professor Wilcox said. Most of the time, he added, you might be able to get away uninfected, even if you are contaminated with someone else’s germs in the bathroom.
“But if those bugs are the flu or coronavirus, then they could well matter.”
Quick, effective drying is the key to good hand hygiene. If the hands remain wet, then bacteria can breed more readily. Hand driers can take time to dry, often people walk off with hands still damp – a perfect breeding ground for bacteria, whereas with handtowels there is nothing like the satisfaction of walking away in a few seconds with completely dry hands!
As a study conducted by the mayo clinic revealed, The transmission of bacteria is more likely to occur from wet skin than from dry skin; therefore, the proper drying of hands after washing should be an integral part of the hand hygiene process in health care. Hand-drying effectiveness includes the speed of drying, degree of dryness, effective removal of bacteria, and prevention of cross-contamination. This review found little agreement regarding the relative effectiveness of electric air dryers. However, most studies suggest that paper towels can dry hands efficiently, remove bacteria effectively, and cause less contamination of the washroom environment. From a hygiene viewpoint, paper towels are absolutely superior to electric air dryers. Paper towels should be recommended in locations where hygiene is paramount, such as hospitals and clinics, food manufacturing facilities and many other industries.
The debate on hand towels vs hand driers may be trivial, but even the NHS suggests it is a matter of life or death.
So, as you probably guessed we are encouraging you to stop sticking your hands into a bacteria-spreading factory and dry, dry and dry again with the much more hygienic option.
The 5 factors we think you should consider when deciding on installing a hand dryer or using paper towels in your facilities include the following:
1. Cost comparison
This is easily answered with our super economical high absorbency hand towel rolls – only 2 hand towels needed to dry hands, the high capacity makes them amazingly low in cost, and they are extremely reasonably priced and easy to install, unlike electric hand driers!
The NHS are recommending the use of paper towels to thoroughly dry your hands to help stop the spread of coronavirus. You can use the paper towel to turn the tap off and open the bathroom door to help protect yourself from germs. The verdict is clear – those jets of hot air are pulling in bacteria from the bathroom air and blowing it out again all over your hands, as well as not properly drying your hands, leaving the perfect conditions for bacteria to multiply. Our touch free hand towel dispensers offer an easy solution to reducing cross contamination. Simply pull the paper towel down and it auto-cuts you a sheet of paper towel, meaning you don’t have to touch anything but the actual paper towels you are going to use! It even comes with a lifetime guarantee!
3. The environment
According to Livestrong, an average dryer uses 0.018 kilowatt hours of electricity for 30 seconds, or around 2,200 watts of power total to run. This means that for one day, approximately 26.61 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions for drying three times. Having hot hand driers blowing out greenhouse emissions into the atmosphere every day is not going to help your companies’ environmental ‘green’ credentials, whilst nicely adding to the electricity bill. Our eco paper towels are Europe’s premium recycled paper hand towels, made from 80% recycled cardboard, Natural, not bleached! Increase sustainability, use less & waste less
This one doesn’t need much explaining! Hand driers seems to be getting louder as the years go on, this is highly unsuitable for places like schools, health clinics and other workplaces where peace and quiet is desired. Unisan’s simple streamline touch-free hand towel dispenser is the best way to keep your echoey bathrooms a tranquil area.
Lets face it, thoroughly drying your hands takes time with a hand drier! Most of us get impatient and walk away with damp hands, wiping them on our clothes, especially when there is people waiting behind you to use it! Drying thoroughly with a hand towel is so much more convenient and satisfying, especially with our high absorbency hand towels that fit our non-touch auto-cut dispensers.
Here at Unisan we’re passionate about making hygiene and recycling at work easier and more engaging. We believe this enables people to do the right thing and allow companies to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and the environment.