How To Stop Touching Your Face

At this point, many people are well aware of the two main strategies to slow the spread of the coronavirus: wash your hands and don’t touch your face.

Sure you could make sure to wash your hands for 20 seconds after touching any new surface, but not touching your face? Like at all? But how?

Research suggests people touch their face around 23 times an hour (often subconsciously), so how can you break the habit if you don’t even realise you’re doing it?

First, you should raise your own awareness to the act. Post notes around your house saying “Don’t touch your face”—even make it the background of your phone. Then start to change your behaviours. Do you usually rest your face in your hands? Put your fingers on your chin while thinking really hard? Rub your eyes or bite your nails? Realise when you are most likely to do these things and replace them with another activity. You could fidget with a rubber band around your wrist, lace your fingers and rest them in your lap, or take up knitting.

You can also use barriers to make touching your face less convenient. Wear glasses so you’ll rub your eyes less, get a manicure so you don’t bite your nails, or put on some makeup so you’re more conscious of not smudging it. If you tend to scratch your face, use some moisturiser to keep your skin hydrated, and carry around eye drops so you won’t need to rub your eyes.

Of course, if you absolutely must touch your face, use a clean tissue and immediately discard it. And if you made it through this entire video without touching your own face, then you’ve earned yourself a reward, beyond staving off COVID-19.


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