Prevention Techniques Against Molluscum Contagiosum

hand washing

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  • Washing your hands properly is one of the best ways to prevent molluscum contagiosum. Proper handwashing eliminates germs that have been picked up from other people or unclean surfaces
  • To prevent molluscum contagiosum, avoid using shared sports equipment that may have come in direct contact with an infected person’s skin, such as towels, clothes, helmets, baseball gloves and balls

Practicing good hygiene habits is a must to prevent the transmission of molluscum contagiosum. Remember that the virus only lives on the skin, and once the lesions are gone, it goes away. The best way to avoid being infected with molluscum contagiosum is to refrain from touching the skin of an infected person. However, there are other ways you can effectively inhibit a molluscum contagiosum infection:1,2

Avoid picking or touching areas of the skin where bumps exist.

Avoid shaving or undergoing electrolysis on areas where there are lesions.

Avoid sharing personal items like towels, clothes, brushes, clothes and bar soaps.

Avoid contact with potentially infected objects like mats, gym equipment and benches.

Clean and cover the lesions with clothing or bandages so other people will not be able to touch them.

Make sure that the affected skin is clean and dry. If there's a low to zero risk of people coming into contact with the lesions, you may remove the covers or bandages.

Avoid scratching or picking lesions. This can spread the virus to other parts of the body and make it easier for you to transfer the infection to other people.

Avoid sexual intercourse if you have lesions on or near the penis, vulva, vagina or anus, or other parts of the genital area.

Do not have sex with people who have been infected with the disease, since sexual transmission of molluscum contagiosum is common among adults. Condoms may not be as effective in preventing the infection because lesions may appear on areas that may not be protected.

The Importance of Proper Hand Washing

Washing your hands clean is one of the best ways to prevent molluscum contagiosum. Proper handwashing eliminates germs that have been picked up from other people or unclean surfaces.3 Since children usually have more “hands-on” activities with others — meaning they’re more likely to touch each other while playing or just talking — it's especially important to teach them proper hand-washing techniques as early in life as possible. Here are good pointers for washing your hands properly:4

  1. After wetting and adding mild soap to hands, work up a good lather all the way up to the wrists, and scrub for at least 15 to 20 seconds.
  2. Make sure you cover all surfaces, including the backs of your hands, wrists, between your fingers and around and below your fingernails.
  3. Rinse hands thoroughly under running water.
  4. Thoroughly dry your hands, ideally using a paper towel. If you’re in a public place, use a paper towel as well to open the door to protect your hands from germs on the handle.

Mild soap and warm, running water are absolutely important when washing your hands. Antibacterial soaps are best avoided, because they can promote development of drug-resistant bacteria. Plus, some antibiotic soaps contain compounds that have been linked to adverse health effects such as allergies, thyroid dysfunction, endocrine disruption, weight gain and inflammatory responses in young children,5,6 and may affect hormone regulation and fetal development in pregnant women.7,8,9

Avoid using alcohol-based products too. While these have been proven to decrease the bacterial diversity in your hands, they may actually raise your risk for carrying potential pathogens on the hands by eliminating naturally occurring protective species.10

Reminders if You Are Participating in Contact Sports

To prevent molluscum contagiosum, avoid using shared sports equipment that may have come in direct contact with an infected person's skin, such as towels, clothes, helmets, baseball gloves and balls.11 People who have been diagnosed with molluscum contagiosum should not participate in contact sports like wrestling, basketball and football unless lesions are covered by clothes or bandages.

Swimming should be avoided too, and if you do swim while infected with molluscum contagiosum, lesions must be covered with watertight bandages. Personal items like towels, goggles and swimsuits must not be shared, while items like kickboards and water toys can only be used if the lesions are concealed by clothing or watertight bandages.12

MORE ABOUT MOLLUSCUM CONTAGIOSUM

Molluscum Contagiosum: Introduction

What Is Molluscum Contagiosum?

Molluscum Contagiosum Symptoms

Molluscum Contagiosum Causes

Molluscum Contagiosum Treatment

Molluscum Contagiosum Prevention

Molluscum Contagiosum Diet

Molluscum Contagiosum FAQ


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