Photo: Greg Marinovich
Photo: Greg Marinovich

Is it better to wash your hands in cold or hot water? 

Do you always wash your hands in hot water? A new study suggests you can turn the heat down a notch, because cleaning your hands in cold water is just as good. 

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Professors from Rutgers University-New Brunswick conducted an experiment to learn the most effective way to clean your hands. While many people assume warmer temperatures get rid of more germs, their results disproved the myth. 

Analysts gathered 20 volunteers, asking them to wash their hands, which were covered in bugs, 20 times each in 59 F, 79F and 100F degree water with varying amounts of soap.

They determined that there was no difference in the number of insects removed in each of the water temperatures or amounts of soap. 

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"People need to feel comfortable when they are washing their hands but as far as effectiveness [goes], this study shows us that the temperature of the water used did not matter," researcher Donald Schaffner said.

Although scientists noted their study was small and more research was needed, they recommend people wash their hands for at least 20 seconds, using an adequate amount of soap to cover the entire surface. 

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