Not washing hands properly? WHO lists 5 negative health effects

The hand-washing program is highly recommended by WHO as most of the infectious diseases are caused due to contaminated hands. Here are some proper hand-washing habits which may prevent illness.

As "prevention is better than cure" whether to welcome diseases or not is solely in our hands. Our hands contain numerous micro-organisms which are very hard to view with our naked eyes, bringing forth many types of diseases such as diarrhea, hepatitis, food poisoning and cold. No wonder, proper hand-washing habit is key to eradicate harmful disease-causing germs, bacteria, and other related organisms off our hands.

The World Health Organization has been in forefront championing the cause. Here are 5 diseases which would devastate your health if you don't wash your hands properly:

Cause Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is a viral liver infection caused by enteric bacteria such as Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumonia. These bacteria enter into the liver through food eaten without washing hands.

People who are having Hepatitis A reveal symptoms like dark color urine, nausea, vomiting, and eyes turned yellowish. Hepatitis A transmission occurs when someone contaminated with the virus doesn't thoroughly wash his or her hands after using washroom and handles food consumed by others.

Frequent diarrhoea

If you don't wash your hands properly while taking meals, it may cause chronic diarrhea which would last longer. A study suggests that frequent washing of hands would prevent nearly 30% of diarrhea-related sicknesses.

If you wash your hands regularly, you may have scored victory over Shigellosis, a bacterial infection with symptoms such as watery diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramp.


Hand-washing may be helped to prevent many disease-causing germs which are already resistant to the antibiotic. It can also cause more usage of antibiotics, for most of the germs are washed away while you wash hands.

Food poisoning

Food poisoning isn't resulted merely by eating improperly cooked food or spoiled food. The dirty hand can also contribute to food poisoning. Almost every foodborne disease is due to not washing hands. No wonder, the appropriate hand-washing habit may prevent most of the infections including foodborne illness.

Cough and cold

Nearly 80 per cent of the infectious diseases are caused due to constant touch. Many people normally get cold when they don't wash their hands properly. However, if you make it a habit to wash your hands frequently, rarely do you fall sick.

How do I wash my hands properly?

Washing your hands properly takes just few seconds or about as long as singing "Happy Birthday" twice, says WHO. Here are the images showing how to handwash properly: