With so many changes happening over the past week alone, people are wondering how to deep clean their homes to prevent pathogens and germs from spreading. While the best advice we have been given is to ensure we keep our hands clean and away from our faces, keeping our homes and work spaces clean is important as well.
According to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, germs can spread “…from one person to another through direct contact when people shake hands, hug, or kiss… through indirect contact if people touch something with germs already on it, like a doorknob, and then touch their eyes, nose, or mouth…[and] by sharing things like cups or pens… [germs can also be spread when] droplets containing germs are released into the air when a person coughs or sneezes. These tiny droplets can travel as far as 6 feet and can spread germs by landing on surfaces or in another person’s eyes, nose, or mouth.”
If you are concerned about the spread of this particular strain of the coronavirus, consider these 3 simple tips:
1.) Clean thoroughly BEFORE you disinfect.
When people start to clean their home, they automatically use disinfectant spray to tidy up, not realizing that they first needed to clean using a regular cleaning solution, followed by the disinfectant. The Water Quality & Health Council states that, “…cleaning comes before disinfection. First, clean the surface with detergent or general household cleaner to remove any visible food or waste particles. Second, rinse the surface with water, dry and then apply disinfectant.” This helps ensure the disinfectant spray touches every surface, which is incredibly important when fighting COVID-19.
If you are unable to find brand name disinfectants at the store, you can use generic disinfectant products, diluted household bleach, or rubbing alcohol. And, if you simply cannot find any of these products, do not be worried. Utilizing a disinfectant is ideal, but cleaning is still effective and necessary.
2.) Target shared areas and devices are daily.
Areas that are frequently used, such as kitchen counters, bathroom vanities, faucets, toilets, door knobs, and remotes, harbor germs—and spread them—which is why they should be cleaned/disinfected daily. If you have a family member that is sick, they should be quarantined within your home, and provided supplies to use to ensure the surfaces they touch remain clean. It is also important to provide ventilation by opening windows to allow fresh air to enter, which will help purify the air circulating inside.
Note that laundry should be done regularly, with towels and sheets being washed in hot water each week. Hand towels should be changed and washed daily, and toothbrushes (if your family member is sick) should be changed regularly and not stored together.
3.) Remove clutter and remain organized.
Ensuring your home is clutter free is important to keeping it clean: if you can’t get to the surfaces of your home, it is impossible to clean them! Utilize the keep, donate, discard principle by targeting a small area of your home each day: keeping items you need, donating items you don’t, and tossing items no one will.
If space is an issue, especially for larger ticket items (such as camping gear, sports equipment, seasonal clothing or seasonal decor) consider renting a self storage nearby. With various sizes and amenities available at affordable prices, finding a unit that suits your needs is simple, without breaking the bank.
Information keeps changing, which is why it is important to remain up to date via the CDC website. If you or a loved one are feeling ill, please contact your medical provider. Be smart, be kind, and be confident – we will pull through this, together!
“So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth.” —Baha’U’Llah