Wash your hands!

I have severe COPD, so I am aware that I must try, at all cost, to avoid an exacerbation. Some years ago I saw a TV programme which showed various experiments of how to avoid getting 'germs.' One of the tests they did was one group of people greeting each other by shaking hands, and the other group doubling kissing on the cheeks as the French do. The ones who transferred the most germs were the hand-shakers, and the kissers transferred less.

I made note of this, as I live in France, and they are always wanting to give you a "Bisou" a double kiss, even when they have a cold. Now I put my hand up and try to explain that I must not get germs, and also, I take their hand, then, as I carry anti-bacterial soap with me, I use it all the time. It works!!!

Lolly/Carol. x

18 Replies

  • I'm gonna wear gloves all winter if I go out,hand gel is good ,nasal spray.

  • I introduced anti-bacterial gel in our canteen at work two years ago in a particularly bad cold season - it immediately stopped cross contamination in the office. I insist everyone uses it when making drinks, when the come in, when they have come out of the loo etc. I use it all the time in winter - can't afford to get these germs and pass them on to my husband! xx

  • I always think the best thing when you have been out in public with all those nasty germs going around is not to touch your eyes and nose until you are able to wash your hands. Also rinse your mouth round with water in case any nasties have go inside and hopefully you can flush them out before they take hold. x

  • Doesn't it make you sick to see people coughing and spluttering and only putting a hand to their mouths?? - then they touch the counter, door handles, etc., etc.......grrrrr :x I now take anti-bacterial hand wipes in my bag at all times. the worst carrier of germs are coins and we are touching them a lot of the time, so be aware! :) I went into a bakery recently and she had just given someone change and then picked up my loaf to wrap it - I actually had the courage to ask her for another loaf and would she wear the plastic gloves she should be wearing - she didn't like it, but she did it. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we all have a germ-free winter?? - :) :) :)

  • I am probably someone you see coughing and spluttering Louisana with only a hand to my mouth. This is before I am able to reach into my bag to get a hanky, but when I am holding shopping or in a queue and my hands are full I would be grateful if you would tell me how to get a 3rd hand. Also how I can manage not to touch anything?

    Many people with lung disease cough and splutter a bit, if you don't well you are lucky. You could be giving a covert message to others with lung disease not to venture out because of the looks people give them. Have you thought about that?

  • No, I haven't thought about that, and I certainly hope that hasn't come across that way. But, words can offend if not used properly so I apologise if that's the case. :(

  • No need to apologise Louisana as the official version seems to be avoid those with coughs and I can quite see why because to all of us here they can be very nasty and to some even life threatening. On the reverse of that I have seen posts from folk on here with a nasty cough who are reluctant to go out because of the attitudes towards them. The horrified stares and even those who go out of their way to avoid them (I have suffered from this) makes them too embarrassed to mix with the public.

    I was out in town today and had a coughing fit mainly to do with the traffic pollution which is well known for affecting those with lung disease. I got my hanky out asap but had to use my hand for a minute or so.

    I do have to go out to do my shopping as I live on my own and there is no one else to do it for me. I also have to exercise too. If I had to stay indoors because of my cough my condition would deteriorate more. x

  • I'm so glad I didn't offend you coughalot. You have probably gathered from some of my posts I tend to waffle on a bit and I really should think before speaking. (I can almost hear my dear late mother telling me that many a time). I soooo do not want to make anyone feel uncomfortable in any way. I recently went for a hospital appointment and a man sat in the small waiting room for 2 hours sniffling and coughing and chatting away to his wife and never once covered his mouth or used a tissue. I had to go and stand in the hallway till he went off to see the consultant, which was 1-1/2 hours) - I can't stand for long without lots of pain, so I was a very unhappy bunny :x That's probably why I wrote my post in such a rush last time :( I so know what you mean about feeling uncomfortable about coughing - I even feel badly in front of my son or friends....which I keep telling myself I shouldn't but I do. Again I hope I haven't deterred anyone from going out!!!!!!! - that wasn't meant at all. Time for me to shut up now I think . I send you all my very best wishes. :)

  • Bless you love of course you didn't offend me :) The trouble is there are those out there like that man in the waiting room. I would be annoyed too at that.

    I always carry tissues and use them but have still had folk very rude to me though some are great and will offer me a sweet! :d I find the most annoying ones are those who go dear dear or Are you all right - no I am not all right but just p... off and leave me alone and stop making me the centre of attention which is the last thing you need isn't it?

    I wasn't having a go at you Louisana, I was just pointing out the other side of it. This is the best thing about this site - we can all have a different opinion without bloodshed (unlike times in the past on here). Long may this continue to be a free speech site :)

    Take care and I hope you are breathing easy. xx

  • Bless you - and I am sooo glad I didn't upset you....I always look forward to your posts. Let's hope we both have a day without lots of coughing!!! :)

  • I use a hand gel regularly but especially before I eat my lunch at work. I have since noticed the number of colds and chest infections have significantly decreased.....!

  • I had no intention of insulting anyone, or of suggesting that those of us should stay indoors....quite the opposite.....I was advocating using hand-wash gels and hand washing to keep infections at bay as much as possible. Good Luck to all of us this winter!


  • Oh well done Lolly for reminding us of that. I think we got a bit sidetracked from your original post - sorry. x

  • I find that when you tell people that you have COPD (I also have MRSA of the sputum) they react as if you are liable to infect them, when, as we all know; it is quite the other way around.

    I now live a very solitary existence but manage to keep my exacerbations to a minimum.

    You pay your money and take your chances, you cannot have it all !

  • Hand gel is the best thing ever - I use it all the time, regardless of whether I'm at home or on the road. I also have individual mugs for the family "just in case" - you can be incubating something without even knowing and there's always someone in and out for coffee/tea! If you're really vulnerable a squirt of First Defence or similar up the hooter doesn't come amiss if going into crowds.

  • Hello Lolly. I was interested in your post and wrote a response. Unfortunately I did so as a new post and not a reply. So..... I'm sorry, but I've started another thread, Hand hygiene, on the same topic. Apologies, a confused Bernie!

  • No problem Bernie! We cannot have too many reminders to avoid exacerbations! Lolly. x

  • Great post Lolly

You may also like...