It is no surprise that with the current pandemic that has hit the world, most of us have leveled up our hygiene, both personally and domestically. Even though the government and WHO (World Health Organization) have informed rules and regulations around it, see here, such as wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds minimum, wear a face mask, use an alcohol-based hand sanitize. There are also other things that we can do especially in our immediate environment that will ensure we are safe and clean from any potentially harmful germs.
There are things that we should get into the habit of cleaning and disinfecting to stay safe, below we will discuss some personal items to clean and the task of disinfecting the surfaces of our homes in a proper manner. Also, making sure you have the right equipment and solutions will help, and you do not need any fancy items, instead, something as suitable as an antibacterial cleaning solution such as “Dettol” that has been used for decades to clean surfaces, is appropriate. Protect yourself first then others.
Personal Items That We Should Clean
Did you know that wearing gloves at the supermarkets and while using cash machines, may not fully protect you from touching any germs? However, the best way to do this while running any errands and going out shopping is, the minute you get home or are near a public toilet, to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with warm water and soap. If this is always not possible keep a bottle of hand sanitizer with you and make sure it has a minimum of 70% alcohol in it.
When cleaning anything, always wear disposable or reusable gloves and never do it with bare hands. First, clean all surfaces with soap and water, and then follow with disinfectant or put a few drops of disinfectant into the soap and water. There is a difference between the two i.e. using soap and warm water will reduce the number of impurities, dirt, or germs on the surface but the disinfectant you use after will kill them.
Anything you touch must be cleaned and one should make this a habit and practice it routinely. Items that must be cleaned often include, doorknobs, countertops (all of them), light switches, keyboards, landlines or phones, sinks, taps and faucets, toilet seats and toilet handles, and do not forget one of the most important items, and the one that we touch the most frequently, your personal mobile phone https://www.healthline.com/health-news/how-to-clean-your-phone-during-outbreak
Clothes as well need to be washed in the warmest setting possible on the machine, follow the manufacturer’s instructions, and where possible use a clothes disinfectant as well.
Disinfecting Home Surfaces
Almost all home surfaces can be and must be wiped routinely. There are many good household options you can use, for instance, the ones listed on the United States Environmental Protection Agency website on its “N-List”. Some of these include Hydrogen peroxide, Isopropyl alcohol, disinfectant sprays such as Purell and Lysol, or Clorox. Always make sure you never inhale them or touch them directly with bare hands.
Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and wear protective clothing, masks, and gloves when handling these. Make sure there is adequate ventilation as well and do not overuse the liquids or gels. Bleach solutions can be used as well if they are diluted. It does need to be at least between 5.24%-8.24% to be of any benefit and make sure it is on the surface for at least a 1-minute minimum. Never mix bleach with any other household solutions besides water.
Bleaching can keep surfaces free from germs for at least 24 hours. If it is a soft surface, you can use soap and water and cleaners made for those types of surfaces. Make sure you vacuum your house as well and wipe off any dust that may have settled on the surfaces as a result. Preferably with the solution. If you can’t do it regularly, you can simply book house cleaning services online. Simply type in house cleaning Sterling VA, or the like, depending on which city you are in. These professional cleaners will be able to help you give the place a deep clean once in a while.
Cleaning and disinfecting high-touch surfaces such as countertops, kitchen areas, remote controls, touch screens, handles of doors any cupboards, the back end of chairs, staircase railings, and tables, for instance, should be mandatory at least twice a week. Once you’ve finished, make sure you wash your clothing and other cloth items such as tea towels or cleaning cloths and microfiber cloths in the highest possible water temperature of the washing machine and dry it in the tumble dryer or leave it out in the sun to dry.
As surprising as it may sound, home surfaces stay clean only if you do not use them. But when you go out shopping and come back with a bunch of groceries that you’re not sure to have been touched by others or where they have been before the store, it will make you see things with fresh eyes. Always wipe down surfaces with disinfectant at any chance you get, and make sure you try not to touch public surfaces with bare hands either. The idea is to stay safe and germ-free as much as possible.
A Recap of the Quick and Easy Steps
- Wear the appropriate set of gloves before starting the cleaning session.
- Checked that your product is EPA Approved. It should say it on the bottle.
- Read the directions of usage carefully. Check that you can use it on the said surface.
- Do a pre-cleanse of the surface using soap and warm water first.
- Always follow the contact time instructions, which should be at least 1 minute.
- If using disposable gloves, throw them away after each cleaning session.
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds after removing the gloves.
- Store everything properly after you have finished using it, away from children’s reach.