HPAC Magazine

Survey Shows Decrease in Hand-Washing Compared to Beginning of Pandemic 

February 23, 2022 | By Logan Caswell

The annual Healthy Handwashing Survey from Bradley polled 1,035 American adults from January 10-21, 2022.

A new survey from Bradley Corporation has found hand-washing frequency decreased 25% among adults compared to when the coronavirus first hit.

Specifically, in the spring of 2020, Americans were washing their hands an average of 10.5 times per day. This January, that number dropped by one-fourth to 7.8 times per day.

While the adult population may be shortchanging their hand-washing routine, the survey found that 79% of parents take some sort of action to encourage their children to suds up. Additionally, 44% say they regularly ask their young ones to wash their hands, 26% have added it to their children’s routine and 25% purchase fun soaps to make hand-washing more interesting.

As a first line of defense to remove germs, 61% of those surveyed correctly believe their hands are less germy after washing with soap and water than after using hand sanitizer – a fact supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For times when soap and water are not available, the CDC says that hand sanitizer is a good, second option for hand hygiene.

Also, the majority of American adults are on target with how long they wash their hands. The CDC recommends lathering up and scrubbing for a minimum of 20 seconds. The survey found that 63% follow that guidance and wash for an average of 21 seconds. However, 17% of the population say they only take five to 10 seconds to clean up.

The annual Healthy Handwashing Survey from Bradley polled 1,035 American adults Jan. 10-21, 2022, about their hand-washing habits, concerns about the coronavirus and flu and their use of public restrooms. Participants were from around the country and were fairly evenly split between men (46%) and women (54%).




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