Practical advice to protect against diseases and infections

Leaflet "It's easy to stay healthy: Tips for hygienic habits"
Leaflet "It's easy to stay healthy: Tips for hygienic habits"

Water and food supplies in Germany are monitored by the government. The quality of tap water is good, and it is entirely safe to drink.

Often, a lot of people live very close together in reception centres and accommodation facilities. You are advised to drink only from your own bottle. You should therefore put an identifying mark on your own

Diseases can spread quickly in reception centres and accommodation facilities. By paying attention to cleanliness and hygiene, you can contribute considerably to protecting yourself and others from infections. We therefore recommend the following hygiene precautions:

Abbildung: BZgA-Grafik "schütz ich mich, schütz ich dich"
Bildquelle: BZgA

Regular hand washing is an important precaution for preventing infections.

When must I wash my hands?

You should wash your hands particularly:

  • every time they become dirty,
  • before preparing food or meals,
  • before mealtimes,
  • before smoking and drinking,
  • after every time you use the toilet,
  • after touching animals,
  • after coughing and sneezing into
  • your hand,
  • after blowing your nose,
  • after contact with waste or garbage.
Photo: How to wash my hands properly

What must I pay attention to when washing my hands?

Start by wetting your hands under running water!

Completely lather up your hands with soap (preferably liquid soap, because bars of soap are often
contaminated with germs)!


Lather up by rubbing for 20 – 30 seconds, especially in the spaces between the fingers and on the


Rinse the soap off thoroughly under running water!


Dry your hands carefully with a clean towel or with disposable towels!

Photo: Do not cough or sneeze into your hand

Do not cough or sneeze into your hand, use the crook of your arm or a tissue instead. Maintain a distance from other people!


Use a tissue to blow your nose, but use it only once!



Do not leave used tissues lying around or throw them on the ground. Do not put them into your trouser, jacket or skirt pocket. Do not collect them!


Used tissues belong in the waste bin!



Wash your hands often if you have a runny nose and are sneezing!

Pay attention to the first signs of illness

If you suffer from a cold or gastrointestinal infection, there is a risk
that you will infect other people. To protect yourself and those around
you, pay attention to the first signs of illness: the typical symptoms
of influenza are sudden high fever, feeling very ill, coughing and sore
limbs. Sudden nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea can indicate a gastrointestinal

Important: Take these symptoms seriously and contact the medical staff in
your reception centre!

Last change: 23. February 2016
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