Hygiene For Health


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A short presentation made for the Girl Guides of Ga. Villingili School, Maldives. Presentation on general hygiene and an introduction to the new sewage system being installed on the island by the American Red Cross tsunami recovery program.

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  • This presentation was developed to give an overview of personal hygiene to about 30 Girl Guides at the Ga. Villingili School, Maldives. We were invited by their teachers as we were doing a Hygiene Promotion Program for the community and a CHAST program for grades 1 to 7 of that school as part of the Waste Water Management System Installation Project of the American Red Cross on Villingili. American Red Cross was in Maldives as part of the Tsunami Recovery Program after the 2004 Asian Tsunami.
  • The concept of hygiene as a method of preventing disease and preserving health is introduced. Emphasis on hygiene as prevention rather than cure. Touch upon hygiene in the domestic, dental or occupational domain.
  • Brief introduction of germs as microorganisms that are too small to be seen by the naked eye. Emphasis on germs being everywhere including the air we breathe and food we eat. Germs can be bacteria, virus, parasite or fungus. Not all are unicellular.
  • Emphasis on useful germs. Another example is the role of microorganisms in the nitrogen cycle in the soil. Highlight that usually it is harmful organisms that are referred to as germs.
  • So if we are surrounded by germs, why aren’t we always sick? Because the body has natural defenses. Eye has tears, stomach has acid, nostrils have hair, blood has immune system. Skin being the largest organ of the body, has a very important role to play in keeping bacteria out.
  • Brief history of how Ignaz Semmelweis, while working in a maternity ward, came to the conclusion that germs were being spread from hand to hand and how he is the pioneer advocate of the importance of hand washing.
  • We sneeze to expel germs that collect in our nostrils and lungs. But this also leads to the spread of germs from person to person. So it is important to cover your sneeze. Best is to cover your nose and mouth. Alternative is to sneeze down into your armpit. If you sneeze onto your bare hand, there is more chance of spreading it onto others. In such a case, always wash your hand properly.
  • Examples of these methods of germ spread and ways to prevent.
  • Try to get more examples from the audience.
  • Research has shown that there are frequently missed sports when washing hands. Emphasis on the thumb and we use the thumb to clean the parts of the hand but often forget to clean the thumb itself. Also we usually miss the tips of the fingers.
  • The two most important times to wash hands is after using the toilet and before eating.
  • Should brush teeth as germs can easily live inside our mouths as there is a constant supply of food for them when we eat. Should brush in the morning and before going to bed, minimum. Should brush all surfaces of the mouth. Usually a good brushing takes 2 minutes.
  • Clarify any questions by the audience.
  • Second part of the presentation gives a briefing of the advantages, parts and maintenance of the new sewer system installed on the island by the American Red Cross. This slide shows the structure of the traditional system present on the island. Main disadvantage is that the waste water leaks from the household septic tank into the ground water. Also, the outfall pipes drain into the lagoon causing damage to the environment. Both of them pose a health risk to the community.
  • This is the new system being installed. Explain how the system functions. The household septic tank is constructed from plastic and leakage into the ground is prevented almost 100%. The outfall pipe is extended beyond the lagoon and drains into the deep sea so that impact on the island environment is minimized. Children can go swimming in the lagoon without fear and risk from germs from the waste water.
  • This is the new Septic Tank. This plastic tank is enclosed in concrete in the ground.
  • The internal structure of the septic tank. Explain how only effluent water goes out of the tank and the hard matter is retained in the first compartment. When this compartment fills up, it is emptied using a septage bowzer. There are useful bacteria in the first compartment that decomposes the sold sewage which means that the compartment will take a long time to fill up.
  • The outfall extends beyond the lagoon and drains into the deep sea. Environmental and health benefits.
  • Benefits of the system
  • A lot of responsibility of the maintenance of the system rests in the hands of the home owners. If they take care of the system then the system is low cost and trouble free. However if they send things into the septic tanks that are detrimental to it then the tanks might need to be drained more often than necessary. First point is to conserve water as much as possible. Most house holds use water taken from the islands ground water for cooking, washing etc. If the amount drained is too high then it will effect the salinity of the ground water.
  • Do not drain large amounts of water into the tank at once as this will wash away the useful bacteria in the septic tank.
  • Do not put inappropriate things into the sewage system. The system is meant only for sewage disposal. It is not a waste disposal system.
  • Do not drain oils and chemicals into the system as they might effect the useful bacteria in the septic system.
  • There are antiseptics and other cleaning agents specially made for use in cleaning toilet appliances. These are formulated so that they do not effect the useful bacteria in the septic tank. They can be identified by Septic Tank Friendly logos on their covers.
  • Under no circumstances should a homeowner open the septic tank and enter it as there might be gasses produced in the tank that are hazardous to our health. In case of malfunction or need for maintenance there will be trained operators with the proper safety equipment who will come and do the work.
  • Hygiene For Health

    1. 1. Hygiene For Health
    2. 2. What is hygiene? <ul><li>Preservation of health and healthy living. </li></ul><ul><li>Reduce the incidence and spreading of disease </li></ul><ul><li>body hygiene, domestic hygiene, dental hygiene, occupational hygiene </li></ul>
    3. 3. What are germs?
    4. 4. Are all germs bad?
    5. 5. What are our defenses?
    6. 6. Ignaz Semmelweis 1847 - hand washing with chlorinated lime solution
    7. 7. Why do we sneeze?
    8. 8. How else do germs spread? <ul><li>Vectors </li></ul><ul><li>Airborne </li></ul><ul><li>Improper cooking </li></ul><ul><li>Hand to Mouth </li></ul>
    9. 9. Good hygiene practices <ul><li>Bathing regularly and properly </li></ul><ul><li>Wearing clean clothes </li></ul><ul><li>Brushing teeth </li></ul><ul><li>Cut your nails regularly </li></ul><ul><li>Eating clean, properly cooked food </li></ul><ul><li>Drink clean water </li></ul><ul><li>Keep the house and your belongings clean </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t put your hand in the mouth unnecessarily </li></ul><ul><li>Cover your cough and sneeze </li></ul><ul><li>Wash hands regularly </li></ul>
    10. 10. Why do we wash hands?
    11. 12. How to wash hands <ul><li>Wet hands under running water; </li></ul><ul><li>Apply soap and rub hands together to make a soapy lather; </li></ul><ul><li>Close the water tap, and then rub the palms, backs of hands, between fingers, back of fingers, thumbs, finger tips and wrist. Do this for at least 20 seconds; </li></ul><ul><li>Rinse hands thoroughly under running water; </li></ul><ul><li>Dry hands thoroughly with either a clean cotton towel, a paper towel. </li></ul>
    12. 13. When should we wash hands? <ul><li>After playing with toys, books </li></ul><ul><li>After cleaning the house or your belongings </li></ul><ul><li>After sneezing or coughing </li></ul><ul><li>After helping or visiting someone who is sick </li></ul><ul><li>After coming home from school, or outside </li></ul><ul><li>As often as possible </li></ul>
    13. 14. Most importantly!!!
    14. 15. Brushing your teeth
    15. 16. Questions ?
    16. 17. What’s the point? Sewage leaks into the ground
    17. 18. Waste Water Management System
    18. 19. The Septic Tank
    19. 20. The Septic Tank
    20. 21. Outfall Pipe To Deep Sea
    21. 22. <ul><li>Protect the environment including the island, water wells, lagoon and reef </li></ul><ul><li>Clean beaches </li></ul><ul><li>Healthy living </li></ul>
    22. 23. Household maintenance Conserve water as much as possible
    23. 24. Avoid access water getting into the system
    24. 25. Do not put inappropriate things into the system
    25. 26. Don’t put oil and chemicals into the system
    26. 27. Use septic tank friendly chemicals to clean the toilets
    27. 28. Do not open or enter the septic tank unless you are trained and with required safety equipment
    28. 29. ?
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