Health in Islam: Hygiene

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Personal Hygiene In Islam

Muslims SHOULD enjoy the highest standard of personal hygiene of all the people in the world. In Islam, cleanliness and purification are not only usual requirements for the performance of worship, or when embracing Islam, (a new Muslim takes a full body shower when embracing Islam) but are part of a Muslim's very faith. Allah (the Most High) says in the Quran (what is translated to mean):

"Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance and loves those who purify themselves (by taking a bath and cleaning and washing thoroughly their private parts, bodies, for their prayers etc.).; (Al Baqarah 2:222)

Narrated AbuMalik al-Ash'ari:

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said: Cleanliness is half of faith and Alhamdulillah (Praise be to Allah) fills the scale, and SubhanAllah (Glory be to Allah) and Alhamdulillah (Praise be to Allah) fill up what is between the heavens and the earth, and prayer is a light, and charity is proof (of one's faith) and endurance is a brightness and the Qur'an is a proof on your behalf or against you. All men go out early in the morning and sell themselves, thereby setting themselves free or destroying themselves. (Sahih Muslim Book 2, Number 0432)

Three Kinds of Cleanliness in Islam Cleanliness In Islam Is Of Three Kinds:

  1. Purification from impurity (i.e. to attain purity or cleanliness, by taking a bath (ghusl) or performing ablution (wudoo) in states in which a bath or ablution is necessary or desirable according to Islamic Law).
  2. To cleanse one's body, dress or place from an impurity of filth.
  3. To remove the dirt or grime that collects in various parts of the body, such as cleaning the teeth and nostrils, the trimming of nails and the removing of armpit and pubic hair.

Types of Purification Types of Purification

Allah (the Most High) says in the Quran (what is translated to mean):

O you who believe! When you intend to offer prayer, wash your faces and your hands (forearms) up to the elbows, rub (by passing wet hands over) your heads, and (wash) your feet up to ankles. If you are in a state of Janaba (i.e. post sexual relations), purify yourself (bathe your whole body).; (Al-Ma'idah 5:6)


    This is when all parts of the body are washed with water, including the mouth and the nose.


    This is when certain parts of the body are washed with water. For more information on this subject, please visit the following site The Prophet's Wudoo (Ablution): The superiority of ablution. And Al-Ghurr-ul-Muhajjalun (the parts of the body of the Muslims washed in ablution will shine on the Day of Resurrection and the angels will call them by that name) from the traces of ablution. Narrated Nu'aim Al-Mujmir:

    "Once I went up the roof of the mosque along with Abu Huraira (RA): He performed ablution and said, "I heard the Prophet (S) saying, 'On the Day of Resurrection, my followers will be called Al-Ghurr-ul-Muhajjalun from the traces of ablution and whoever can increase the area of his radiance should do so (by performing ablution in the most perfect manner.'" (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol. 1, Hadith No. 138)

    Narrated Uthman ibn Affan:

    "The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: 'He who performed ablution well, his sins would come out from his body, even coming out from under his nails.'" (Sahih Muslim, Book 2, Number 0476)


    This method of purifcation, which does not require water, is used instead of ablution (Wudoo) and Ghusl in certain circumstances (i.e. such as no water is available, etc.). Allah (the Most High) says in the Quran (what is translated to mean):

    But if you are ill or on a journey or any of you comes from answering the call of nature, or you have been in contact with women (i.e. sexual intercourse) and you find no water, then perform Tayammum with clean earth and rub therewith your faces and hands. Allah does not want to place you in difficulty, but He wants to purify you, and to complete His Favor on you that you may be thankful.; (Al-Ma'idah 5:6)

Keeping The Fitrah Keeping The Fitrah

Prophet (peace be upon him). He said, "From the acts of nature are five: circumcision (obligation for men, but not for women), removing pubic hairs, trimming the mustache, cutting the nails and plucking the hair from under the armpits."1 [Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim].

It is not allowed to leave them for more than forty nights. This is based on the Hadith of Anas who said, "The Messenger of Allah set a time limit for us for trimming the mustache, trimming nails, removing armpit hairs and removing pubic hairs. They cannot be left for more than forty nights."2 [Recorded by Muslim]. Letting them grow long resembles animals and some of the disbelievers.

May Allah keep you well.


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