Personal Hygiene and Sanitation
Personal Hygiene and sanitation is every soldierís responsibility. A command is the mirror-image of its commander, the sate of the health of the men and the condition where they work in, reflect the leadership, discipline and supervision in the unit.
It is important to practice hygiene and sanitation not only to serve as an example, but also to impart others the need for clean and healthful living to support our primary objective, that is the accomplishment of the mission.
Rules of hygiene and sanitation are simple and easy to follow but some carelessly disregard them. It is for this reason that everybody should sometimes go out of their way to remind and to see to it that the rules of good hygiene and sanitation are followed.
II. BASIC HEALTH GUIDE LINES
1. Always keep your body clean. Take a bath once everyday. As minimum, bathe your feet, hands and private parts. If possible, change your underwear and socks after bathing. When water is scarce, you may bathe twice a week. If water availability is worst, scrub your body regularly with a clean wet cloth.
2. Change your underclothing daily if possible, if not , at least twice a week. Inspect them for lice, fleas or other bugs that may keep you itchy.
3. Change clothing, shoes or socks immediately after getting them wet to avoid getting colds, athletes foot and other illness.
4. Brush your teeth at least twice a day, preferably after waking up and before going to bed. Brush your teeth from the back portion of your teeth and the front portion, away from the gums towards the cutting edge of your teeth
5. Always wash your hands with soap and water after doing your duty and after engaging in a strenuous exercise, before eating and after going out of the comfort room.
6. Use only your personal eating and drinking utensils if possible. You may contact disease from infected mess gear of personal articles of others. For the same reason, avoid borrowing and lending your own clothing, towels, shoes, etc.
7. When mosquitoes and other flying insects are present in your area, be sure to use your mosquito nets. Tuck it well around your bedding and be sure that there are no holes in your mosquito nets before sleeping. Take your anti-malaria tablets regularly, many soldiers became fatal casualties due to their indifference to this tiny but effective anti-malaria tablets.
8. Never drink water from any untreated source until it has been declared safe for drinking by the unitís medical doctor. When purification tablets, such as halozone, are available use them to treat your drinking water. If there are none, you may consider boiling your water after fifteen (15) minutes to kill the harmful bacteria that may be present.
9. Relieve yourself on the area which is designated as the head area for your unit.
10. Exercise your muscle and joints regularly, inactivity may do equal damage to your health as extreme exertions or fatigue.
11. Avoid venereal diseases. Do not associate yourself with infected women who may carry these diseases. If you think you caught any of these sexually transmitted diseases (STD) report to your medical officer at once. Any venereal diseases can be cured much easier and quickly on its early stage. Untreated venereal diseases may result to death or permanent damage to your body.
12. As a leader, you must set an example of personal cleanliness and sanitary discipline to your men. If possible, bathe, shave and wear clean clothes daily. Observe all the precautionary measures mentioned above and require everybody to do likewise.
III. CAMP SANITATION
- Refers to the rules of cleanliness and sanitation which individual soldiers must follow.
1. When putting up camps and bivouacs, build them around a well-sanitized area. Make provisions for sanitation requirements, such as the location of the galley, the head and billeting for the men.
2. Control your water supply. Purify drinking water in a manner approved by the medical officer. When the water source is a stream or river, mark separate points for washing, cooking and human consumption. Washing and bathing points must always be down stream from points used for drinking and cooking. Of course in this case of a tactical camp, must secure these water points from enemy harassments.
3. Locate and construct heads and urinals away from the galley, mess hall and water supply but not too far from the living area. As much as possible, heads and urinals should be situated downwind of above mentioned areas.
4. Maintain the sanitary conditions in the galley. Food must be stored in clean receptacles. Garbage, leftovers and other refuse must be disposed off at designated dumping areas or garbage pits, where they may be covered with soil or burned.
5. Carry out a continuous campaign, against insects, rodents and other pest including flies, mosquitoes, lice, mites, cockroaches and rats. The simplest way to control the increase of these pests is to cut-off their nourishment by screening heads, galleys, and messes and by disposing waste properly.