Most of a home maker’s time is spent cleaning around the home. Though you may be cleaning your utensils and mopping the floor daily, there are a number of things lying around your home and office that you neglect while on a cleaning spree. And some of these things are breeding ground for all sorts of bacteria, virus and other germs.
So, here are 10 common things that you should be cleaning more often to keep yourselves healthier by steering away from germs.
Statistics report that an average person spends up to 4 hours a day on his/her mobile phone. Just think about it. Your mobile is often the first thing you touch when you wake up. You keep it in your pocket, you take it to the loo, and you even take it to your dining table. Gross, isn’t it?
Considering all residues, moisture and constant handling with those germ laden hands, it’s a no-brainer that your cellphone could be the dirtiest thing you touch. This is why, it is a good idea to clean it with alcohol based digital device sanitizers at least twice a week.
Keyboard & Remote Control
Just like mobile phones, your remote control and laptop and desktop keyboards are also constantly in contact with your hands. Remotes especially are touched by everyone in your family, even while eating, leading to bacterial and virus growth. So, experts advise to wipe it with electronics sanitizers on a weekly basis.
You do take out the trash daily. But how often do you clean the trash can. It can be a little disgusting to clean the garbage bin especially in cases of spills. Nevertheless, it has to be cleaned on a weekly basis to contain the growth of germs inside it.
Have you ever given a thought about where all you keep your hand bag? On your desk, public restroom counter tops, seats in public transport vehicles… the list is endless. And think about who all touches the money you keep inside the purse. Well, I am not trying to make you fixated about germs. But cleaning the purses often will help keep diseases at bay.
Mattress & Pillow
Dust mites are one of the major causes of indoor air pollution. These are usually found on mattresses and feed on dead human skin. The fecal matter and decomposed bodies of dust mites contain a protein that triggers allergy in most people. Washing a minimum of 60 degree Celsius kills dust mites on bedlinens. To cleanse the pillows, wash it every quarter by tossing it in to a washing machine on no-spin setting. As for mattresses, clean it with a vacuum cleaner regularly and flip the mattress every 3-4 months.
The sponge with which you clean your utensils is one of the most unhygienic things in your home. The combination of left-over food residues and moisture makes it an optimal environment for bacterial growth. You might have heard that boiling sponge in water or microwaving it will help kill the bacteria and cleanse the sponges. But newer studies have found this to be only partially true. While the weaker bacteria are killed through microwaving, the stronger ones aren’t and over the time, they even get immune to heat making them super resistant and further stronger. So, ideally, replace the sponges every week or as often as it is feasible for you. Alternatively, you could clean the sponges regularly in a strong bleach solution.
Even if you have separate cutting boards for vegetables and meat, the chances of food getting contaminated from cutting boards is very high as it is likely to harbor a lot of bacteria. You can either wash cutting boards daily with regular dish washing liquid to scrub and clean them. If you use cutting boards for meat, then cleaning with 3% hydrogen peroxide will help disinfect the boards better.
Many people completely omit cleaning water bottles because after all, you just use it to store clean water. Isn’t it? Well, not quite so. When you put them to your mouth, germs are automatically transferred to the bottle. Though not as dangerous as bacteria found elsewhere, you are giving bacteria a chance to proliferate when you don’t clean the bottles often. So, irrespective of the material of the bottle, ensure that you clean your water bottles daily with soap and water.
Thanks to the plastic ban in major cities, people have started using reusable fabric shopping bags. Bacteria, yeast and mold from the vegetables and meat is likely to dwell on those bags and if you keep these bags inside the car, then the warmth inside the car is creating a more conducive environment for its growth. Worry not, its pretty easy to clean shopping bags made from fabrics and canvas. Just toss them in the washing machine and crank up the temperature to a minimum of 60 degree Celsius and you are done!
If you have kids at home, you are most likely to have bath toys as well. Most parents never bother cleaning these toys separately as they are already in water. But water could get inside the squeaky toys which has holes and the humid environment could foster mold growth both inside and outside the toy. Ideally, wash the toys at least every week in a dilute vinegar solution. Also, take care to air dry the toys every day after bath.
Do you have to share any more household items that you feel is dirty but often neglected? Do let us know in comments.
publications like Huffington Post, Kidsstoppress and MyCity4Kids. She also runs her own blog Smart Home Guide ( http://smarthomeguide.in)