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When should I wash my hands to prevent E. coli infection?

ANSWER

One of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and your family against E. coli is wash your hands, particularly in these situations:

  • Before you prepare food
  • Before preparing bottles or food for infants or toddlers
  • Before touching anything, such as a pacifier, that goes into a small child’s mouth.
  • After you’ve used the bathroom or changed a diaper
  • After you’ve had contact with animals, even your own pets
  • After handling raw meat

From: What is E. Coli? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

CDC: “E. coli.”

Johns Hopkins Health Library: “Escherichia coli O157:H7,” “Escherichia coli.”

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease: “E. coli.”

Mayo Clinic: “Diseases and Conditions -- E. coli.”

KidsHealth.org (Nemours Foundation): “E. coli.”

World Health Organization: “E. coli Fact Sheet.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on December 21, 2016

SOURCES:

CDC: “E. coli.”

Johns Hopkins Health Library: “Escherichia coli O157:H7,” “Escherichia coli.”

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease: “E. coli.”

Mayo Clinic: “Diseases and Conditions -- E. coli.”

KidsHealth.org (Nemours Foundation): “E. coli.”

World Health Organization: “E. coli Fact Sheet.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on December 21, 2016

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How can I prevent E. coli infection?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.