From the Rav’s desk: May one touch his socks in middle of Davening?

  1. Question: [Tuesday, 21st Sivan, 5781]

If I have an itch on my foot during Davening, am I allowed to itch myself through my sock [i.e. On top of my sock] or would this make me be required to wash my hands afterwards?



Yes, it is permitted for you to touch your socks during Davening and you do not have to wash your hands afterwards, so long as you’re careful not to touch your shoes in the process. Nonetheless, some are stringent to wash their hands anyways especially if you’re socks are tangibly soaked with sweat that will then get on your hands.

Sources: See Ashel Avraham Butchach Hilchos Hanhagas Adam Baboker that touching sweat is only a problem than touching the actual skin however when touching a garment then it is only an act of piety to wash hands if sweat gets on them; Aruch Hashulchan 4:21 “one who removes his socks does not need to wash his hands as it has the same status as the rest of one’s garments”; Kaf Hachaim 4:72 brings opinions who state that one should wash his hands but concludes that even in their opinion it is merely an act of piety to be stringent to wash his hands after touching his socks as from the letter of the law washing is not required; Sheivet Halevy 8:2


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