Washing your hands with soap and water is one of the best ways to protect yourself from the coronavirus, but it’s hard to know exactly how to do this effectively. A lot of people will absentmindedly squirt some liquid hand soap or lather a bar of soap and rub their hands under a running faucet for a few seconds, but according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, you should be spending at least 20 seconds washing your hands. It sounds like it would be a simple matter to simply count to 20 while you wash your hands, but that might get boring for some people. Some have recommended singing Happy Birthday twice or the ABC song once since that will take you to about 20 seconds, but even that gets old after a while. After all, there are only so many times you can sing these songs before you start to lose your mind. Instead of these two songs, why not mix it up a little bit and find something else to sing? If you don’t have any ideas of what you can sing that will ensure a thorough hand-washing, here are just a few ideas.
“Africa” by Toto
You obviously don’t need to sing the whole song, but the chorus is the perfect length for hand washing. It’s the part that starts with “It’s gonna take a lot to drag me away from you…” The song is probably stuck in your head right now, so you might as well make good use of it the next time you have to wash your hands.Listen - YouTube
“Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees
Not only is the chorus of “Stayin’ Alive” (“Whether you’re a brother or you’re a mother you’re stayin’ alive…”) perfect for washing your hands, but the rhythm is perfect for chest compressions when you have to perform CPR.Listen - YouTube
“Jolene” by Dolly Parton
If you’re a fan of classic country, you can always sing the chorus of “Jolene” by Dolly Parton when you wash your hands. It’s a slightly more depressing song, but it’s a classic, and it’s probably a better choice than the ABC song for the 1,000th time.Listen - YouTube
The Star Wars Imperial March
If you’re a big Star Wars fan and you can’t remember the words to any songs, you can always hum the Imperial March, otherwise known as Darth Vader’s theme when washing your hands. In fact humming the Imperial March makes just about everything better.Listen - YouTube
These are just a few songs that you can sing that add up to 20 seconds. They technically aren’t the entire song, but it’s still more fun and satisfying than just counting to 20 or singing “Happy Birthday” again. These choruses will take you to 20 seconds, but you can really use just about any song you like. If you want a clear poster or chart for your favorite song, you can also go to the site Washyourlyrics.com and enter the name of your favorite song. The site will pare the song down to about 20 seconds and generate a chart that tells you how you should be washing your hands while you sing it. It might not work with every song you can think of, but that’s really only because there are too many songs out there to count. If you have a favorite, go to the site and give it a try.
As fun as it is to come up with new songs to sing while washing your hands, the most important thing here is that you take the time to wash your hands at all. Whether you sing the chorus of your favorite song or you just count to 20, you need to be diligent about your hand washing. There isn’t an end in sight for the COVID-19 pandemic, and there won’t be until a viable vaccine is widely available. Until that happens, keep washing your hands.