If only PZ's kids were still little...

I see he already mentioned this while I was out of town, but I just ran across it: Squid Soap:

More on this and handwashing in general below the fold...

SquidSoap is a fun soap dispenser designed for teaching children healthy hand washing habits.

SquidSoap works by applying a small ink mark on a person's hand when they press the pump to dispense the soap. The ink is designed to wash off after the hands are washed for about15-20 seconds, which is the time recommended by most doctors.

Really clever, actually. There's a little ring of ink on the top of the pump, so kids have to wash long enough to remove the ink--theoretically, cutting down on the "barely get your hands wet" type of handwashing. (And it's not only kids who do this--even adults tend to suck at washing their hands.

There are other products out there also, targeted at getting young kids to wash their hands effectively. One that's nice to use at science fairs (or even in actual scientific research is called GloGerm, a UV-reactive powder (or cream) that can be put on hands prior to handwashing. After washing, hands are put under a blacklight, and kids can see where they missed washing.

I don't know how well any of these work as far as any long-term influence on handwashing behavior, but anything that gets kids interested in and thinking about handwashing is, in my opinion, a good thing. Might have to pick up a few of those for my son's preschool class...

(Image from http://www.squidsoap.com/images/home.jpg and http://www.teachersource.com/catalog/images/glo200.jpg)

More like this

We're getting worse at washing our hands according to the Baltimore Sun. One thing I've said many times before, but it bears repeating: the best way to avoid getting sick is to limit contact with someone else who is sick. While that sounds obvious, one very good way to do that is handwashing.…
October 15th is Global Handwashing Day. CDC explains why handwashing deserves the recognition: This observance increases awareness and understanding of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable method of preventing disease around the world. Handwashing with soap has an important role to…
As the flu pandemic ramped up with no vaccine in sight, attention turned to more prosaic things people might do to avoid infection. At the top of most lists was hand washing. I think hand washing is a good thing to do, although the evidence it does much against influenza specifically is weak or non…
By Jay Graham Global Handwashing Day is coming up on October 15, and events in its honor will be occurring all week. Children are a key focus of handwashing campaigns. Diarrhea continues as the second leading cause of death in kids under 5 years of age globally. Nearly one in every five child…

PZ's kids? I'm sure PZ himself would go for that.

By somnilista, FCD (not verified) on 17 Aug 2006 #permalink

Not recommended for children with OCD...

Look what an obsession with handwashing did to Lady Macbeth. "Out, damn'd spot! out, I say!"

(From: The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act V, Scene I)

By Unsympathetic reader (not verified) on 17 Aug 2006 #permalink

This is very cool looking... Thanks for the post.


Recently I read about tetanaus being caused by a Clostridium bug.

C difficile is also caused by the same family of bug. (anaerobic, in spore form, forms exotoxins....yes?)

Considering that there is a tetanus vaccine, do you think it is possible to come up with a C Diff vaccine to address the emergence of new and community acquired strains of C Diff?

Would this help someone who has alreday been infected with C Diff?

Does the fact that Clostridium difficile cells are Gram positive, while its spores are Gram negative make things more difficult to come up with a vaccine? Or a treatment?

Sorry- I was just curious and this seemed like a hygeine related thread.

Thank you.

By ImpatientPatient (not verified) on 18 Aug 2006 #permalink

Cool! I ordered a bunch.

By Vermonster (not verified) on 18 Aug 2006 #permalink