How to make your own hand sanitizer to battle off coronavirus germs03/04/2020
Some VERY handy tips! How to make your own hand sanitizer using rubbing alcohol and aloe vera to battle off coronavirus germs as prices hike and some drugstore shelves run bare
- Demand for hand sanitizer has soared 1,400% in the past week
- Some drugstores have begun to limit sales to customers
- Certain sellers are increasing prices to profit of the scarce supplies
- DIY hand sanitizer is just as effective as one bought at the store
- It must contain at least 60% alcohol in order to kill all coronavirus germs
- Aloe vera gel is added to the rubbing alcohol to protect skin
- If sealed properly, a homemade hand sanitizer can last for weeks
- Public health experts still recommend hand washing with warm water and soap which will remove germs from your skin
- Amazon banned 10,000 users for price gouging Wednesday amid the panic
Shoppers have flooded to drugstores to stock up on hand sanitizer as the coronavirus outbreak in the United States has worsened, leaving shelves barren of the product for those who weren’t quick off the mark.
In the past week, demand for hand sanitizer has soared 1,400% with some stores limiting the amount of a customer can purchase at one time and others jacking up prices looking to make a profit off the global panic.
Amazon has banned 10,000 users for price gouging as the panic buying intensifies.
While public health experts are advising that routinely and effectively washing your hands with soap and water is the best way to warn off coronavirus germs, there are ways to make your own hand sanitizer for those times when you just can’t get to a sink.
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Hand sanitizer can be made at home by using rubbing alcohol and aloe vera gel
Empty shelves of sanitizing wipes in the Walgreens in Boston as concerned shoppers stock up
There have been nine deaths, all in Washington state, as a result of the coronavirus
‘Homemade hand sanitizers are just as effective as what you buy as long as you used the right percentage of alcohol,’ Dr. David Agus told CBS MoneyWatch.
‘This is a good way to get around people price-gouging for Purell.’
In order for any good home hand sanitizer to work, it needs to be compromised of at least 60 percent alcohol.
Recommended for use is rubbing alcohol (Isopropyl alcohol) while ethanol will also make a suitable variation.
How to make homemade hand sanitizer
Place 2/3 cup of rubbing alcohol (Isopropyl alcohol) in a bowl
Add 1/3 cup of aloe vera gel and mix well
Add 5-10 drops of essential oil and mix again
Ensure alcohol equals to 60% of mixture
Use a funnel to transfer to a liquid soap container
Ensure container is tightly sealed
Ethanol can be used instead of rubbing alcohol
Alternative non-alcohol methods swap one tablespoon of witch hazel and half a teaspoon of tea tree oil for the rubbing alcohol
In order to protect your skin, aloe vera gel is added to the rubbing alcohol and a few drops of essential oil will give it a nicer smell.
To make your own hand sanitizer, take 2/3 cup of rubbing alcohol and mix in a large bowl with 1/3 cup of aloe vera gel and 5-10 drops of the essential oil of your choice.
A two-ounce spray bottle or a liquid soap container can be used to hold the mixture to take on your commute or leave in your home or office.
If made properly and sealed tightly in its container, a homemade hand sanitizer can last for weeks.
‘If you make it well, it’s about as effective as using soap and water,’ Dr. Stephen Morse, a professor of epidemiology at Columbia University in New York, told CBS.
‘We know it works — just make sure it has enough alcohol in it.’
While health experts say that DIYers should ensure the solution is at least 60 percent alcohol, some claim an alcohol-free version can be made using witch hazel and tea tree oil.
Rubbing alcohol should be mixed with aloe vera gel and a few drops of an essential oil
Rubbing alcohol, aloe vera gel and a few drops of essential oil are mixed together
If properly made and sealed, homemade sanitizer can be kept for several weeks
In this case, one cup of aloe vera gel should be mixed with one tablespoon of witch hazel, half a teaspoon of tea tree oil, a drop of vitamin E oil and a few drops of an essential oil.
The witch hazel is said to be a non-drying cleanser while tea tree oil will take on germs.
The Vitamin E oil is used to add moisture.
According to Miryam Warham, a biology professor at William Paterson University, hand washing is still the best method to rid yourself of germs. By washing your hands you are removing all germs from your skin.
Hand sanitizer aims to kill the germs but does not remove them.
‘Handwashing is the most important first step, and you shouldn’t be bashful about it,’ Wahrman told Business Insider.
The death toll from the coronavisrus in the United States has now reached nine people, all in Washington state.
At least 137 people have been diagnosed.
There have now been over 3,200 deaths related to the virus globally and over 93,000 infected.
The Center of Disease Control continues to advise people to wash their hands regularly with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds, or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer, to prevent the spread.
Hand sanitizer does not kill all viruses but is effective against the coronavirus.
On Wednesday, Amazon banned 10,000 users for price gouging and removed one million products for making spurious health claims amid the global coronavirus outbreak.
Unscrupulous online traders have tried to cash in on the health emergency as stocks of hand sanitizer and face masks have run low in stores amid panic-buying.
Two-packs of Purrell hand sanitizer, which typically sell for $12, were marked up at $119.99 on Amazon this week as people tried to protect themselves from the virus.
A company spokesman told ABC: ‘There is no place for price gouging on Amazon.’
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BEING TESTED FOR CORONAVIRUS
On Tuesday, Vice President Mike Pence announced that any American can be tested for coronavirus as long as a doctor approves it.
The move appears to expand upon previous criteria needed for testing by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
But how do you determine if you have symptoms of COVID-19 and when you should see a doctor?
We break down everything you need to know about being tested for the virus that has infected more than 120 Americans and killed at least nine.
WHAT ARE THE LATEST GUIDELINES FOR BEING TESTED?
There are three groups of people that the CDC recommends get tested.
1. People with symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath who have been in ‘close contact’ with someone confirmed to have coronavirus
2. Patients with symptoms who have traveled to areas affected by the virus within the last 14 days
3. Those with symptoms who need to be hospitalized and no other cause for their illness is found. They don’t need to have a travel history or exposure to another patient
HOW DOES THIS DIFFER FROM THE PREVIOUS CRITERIA?
When the CDC first began testing, only those with a travel history to China – where the outbreak emerged – or those who had been exposed to a confirmed coronavirus patient were tested.
However, the agency says its criteria for testing is always ‘subject to change as additional information becomes available.’
WHAT TO DO IF YOU NEED A TEST?
Health officials strongly advise that anyone who believes they may be infected not show up unannounced at their doctor’s office in case they expose others to the highly-contagious disease.
Instead, the CDC suggests immediately calling your physician or healthcare provider.
‘Your healthcare professional will work with your state’s public health department and CDC to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19,’ the CDC’s website states.
If you are suspected of having the virus, you will most likely get tested at a hospital.
The test involves getting a swab of the patient’s nostril and throat. If the patient has a wet cough, a sample of sputum (a mixture of saliva and mucus) will also be collected.
WHY HAS IT BEEN DIFFICULT FOR PEOPLE TO GET TESTED?
There have been multiple reports of people not having accessing to get tested.
The first batch of test kits that the CDC sent to state and local health departments were faulty, which led to a delay.
Secondly, the CDC had strict criteria for testing, which led to missed diagnoses of people who caught the virus from so-called ‘community spread,’ meaning it’s unknown how they were infected.
A third reason is that some health departments did not leave the decision to test up to doctors as the CDC suggested.
For instance, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health initially required doctors to call a hotline to determine if their patients met CDC criteria for testing.
Then, before the test could be administered, it had to be authorized at the State Public Health Lab.
WILL IT BE EASIER TO GET TESTED NOW?
Since the CDC’s testing fiasco, several health departments have either received new kits from the federal agency or made their own.
Additionally, the US Food and Drug Administration expanded its Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) policy so allow more labs can apply for approval to test for the virus.
The CDC that 75,000 test kits are currently available and more are being manufactured.
FDA Commissioner Dr Stephen Han told reporters on Monday that close to one million people would be tested by the end of the week.
But figures from the Association of Public Health Laboratories show that likely no more than 100,000 people would be tested by week’s end.
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