How can personal cleanliness prevent sicknesses?
It is best to wash with soap and clean water every day, if possible. Also:
- wash your hands before eating or preparing food, after passing urine or stool, and before and after caring for a baby or someone who is sick.
- wash the genitals every day with mild soap and water. But do not douche. The vagina cleans and protects itself by making a small amount of wetness or discharge. Douching washes away this protection and makes a woman more likely to get a vaginal infection.
- pass urine after having sex. This helps prevent infections of the urine system (but will not prevent pregnancy).
- wipe carefully after passing stool. Always wipe from front to back. Wiping forward can spread germs and worms into the urinary opening and vagina.