Search:
News Masthead
 

EMAIL ALERTS


 

2008 Clean Hands Report Card

The following questions were asked of 916 American adults (458 men and 458 women). The independent consumer research study was completed August 21-24, 2008, on behalf of The Soap and Detergent Association (SDA), by Echo Research. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percent.

Which of the following do you think is the number one way to prevent colds and flu?

Results:

  • Clean hands regularly (56%); up 6% from 2006 (50%)
  • Healthy diet (20%); similar to 2006 (21%)
  • Immunization (8%); similar to 2006 (7%)
  • Proper sleep (7%); same as 2006
  • Stress reduction (5%); same as 2006

Insights:

  • According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cleaning your hands is the single most important thing we can do to keep from getting sick and spreading illness to others.
     

Approximately how many times do you wash your hands on an average day?

Results:

  • More than 10 times (36%%); down 6% from 2006
  • 7-10 times (26%); up 2% from 2006
  • 5-6 times (24%); up 6% from 2006
  • 3-4 times; same as 2006
  • 1-2 times; down 2% from 2006

Insights:

  • On average, American heads of household wash their hands 8 times per day. Unfortunately, 37% wash their hands fewer than 7 times per day.

When you wash your hands, how long do you typically lather them, or rub them with soap?

Results:

  • More than 20 seconds (25%); down 3% from 2006
  • 15-20 seconds (27%); up 6% from 2006
  • 10-15 seconds (33%); same as 2006
  • Less than 10 seconds (13%); same as 2006
     

Insights:

  • When washing their hands, the average American head of household will wash for 15.6 seconds. Every one should wash their hands with soap and water for at least 15-20 seconds.

How often do you wash your hands after you cough or sneeze?

Results:

  • Always (22%); down 6% from 2006
     
  • Frequently (37%); up 3% from 2006
  • Seldom (32%); up 6% from 2006
  • Never (7%); down 3% from 2006
     

Insights:

  • Over half of American heads of household always or frequently wash their hands after they cough or sneeze. Thirty-nine percent seldom or never do.

How often do you wash your hands before eating lunch? Results:

Results:

  • Always (61%); down 7% from 2006
  • Frequently (25%); up 5% from 2006
  • Seldom (10%); up 2% from 2006
  • Never (4%); up 2% from 2006
     

Insights:

  • Not everyone follows the routine of washing their hands before lunch, as evidenced by 30% who don’t always wash before eating lunch.

How often do you wash your hands after going to the bathroom? Results:

Results:

  • Always (85%); down 7% from 2006
  • Frequently (10%); up 5% from 2006
  • Seldom (2%); same as 2006
  • Never (3%); up 2% from 2006
     

Insights:

  • The number of people who always wash their hands after going to the bathroom decreased by 7% since 2006.

Back to News Release