Gloves are in! They are quite the fashion statement these days. People wear them in all facets of life. People wear them while shopping, pumping gas, and yes, people wear them while alone, driving their cars. The deal with the glove is obviously to stay safe in the midst of the terrifying global novel coronavirus pandemic. It seems that if we wear them, we keep ourselves safe. It’s important to understand how gloves can help and how they can’t. It is important also to understand we can make things more dangerous by wearing the glove!
How to use gloves
Gloves are simply a second set of skin we use to complete a limited, short task. We get them dirty, mess them up during our task and then immediately remove them and wash our hands before continuing on to another task. Gloves are never to be used from one task to another, through out the day.
Imagine your dentist; a trained medical professional who follows ADA guidelines. They wash their hands, approach you with a fresh set of gloves, examine your teeth, immediately remove them, wash their hands and move on to the next patient. Can you imagine your reaction if your dentist were to wear gloves from the last patient to examine your teeth? Perish the thought.
In a medical emergency, First Aid responders should always glove up while they provide aid. After the emergency, the responder should immediately remove them and wash their hands.
We should not use gloves throughout our day. Yes, this is a shocking statement. Gloves should not be worn throughout the day. Again, wear them for one specific task, remove them and wash your hands. Throughout the day, one would need to change after every single move, after every task change. If one or two pairs are worn throughout the day, the gloves worn simply become paintbrushes, painting infection to everything we touch. This is called cross-contamination. Cross-contamination is a problem in healthcare settings and great lengths are taken to eliminate it.
Non-Medical overuse of the glove causes the following problems:
- Promoting a false sense of safety
- Encouraging, not reducing cross-contamination
- Distraction from the 4 main coronavirus safety priorities
4 Main Coronavirus Safety Priorities!
The 4 main Coronavirus Safety Priorities are:
- Maintain physical distance 6 feet or more from others
- Keep hands away from face
- Wash hands frequently
- Universal mask use
The CDC has downgraded the danger of COVID-19 surface contamination risk. Focus on the 4 main coronavirus safety priorities will significantly reduce infection. Save the gloves for healthcare providers. They need all the help they can get!