Washing your hands regularly is a key way to stop the spread of germs. When it comes to how you dry your hands, new research (University of Leeds) says that step can be just as important to your health. The study looked at how effective paper towels and air hand dryers were at removing viruses still on a person’s hands after washing.
… Although both methods help cut the spread of viruses, paper towels were found to be 10 times more effective at keeping one’s hands from contaminating other surfaces than a dryer.
… After using each method volunteers left a hospital bathroom and touched 11 different surfaces, including doors, stairwell railings, phones, and even medical equipment. The study also tracked the viruses each volunteer spread on their clothes using a specialized apron. The team found that the contamination after using an air dryer was much worse on 10 of the 11 surfaces.