You may be a neat-freak and always find the time to sweep, mop, and wipe every day, but the fact remains that dirt and germs will always find a way into your home because of our daily activities. But that doesn’t mean that you should disregard cleaning altogether. This is just another reason why you need to step up in your home maintenance.
Here are some of the most common house areas that harbor dirt, germs, and bacteria, and how you can keep them in spic-and-span.
The Kitchen Counter And Sink
A study conducted by the National Sanitation Foundation revealed that there are more bacteria — including salmonella and E. coli, which cause various gastrointestinal infections — in areas where food is prepared, cooked, and stored. That means that your kitchen counter and sink is dirtier than your toilet. Yuck!
Keep your kitchen counters clean by washing it with bleach or a bleach-based cleanser every day, ideally at night when all of the preparation and cooking is already finished. Remember to keep all surfaces dry, since a lot of bacteria and fungi thrive in damp environments. Use a microfiber towel for the final wipe-down to get every last bit of moisture, food particles, and other debris. You may even want to consider replacing all your kitchen rags with microfiber cloths since these last longer, can be easily disinfected (wash it in warm water!), and are more effective in picking up dirt and water, making cleaning a breeze. It would be best if you also replaced sponges and other dish-cleaning implements regularly to prevent bacteria from growing and transferring to your utensils.
Remotes, Switches, And Knobs
You may not think about these things often, but they can quickly accumulate dirt and germs because various people, with various amounts of dirt and germs in their hands, touch these items every day. Pay extra attention to light switches, knobs, and handles in areas that are “germier” than others, such as the kitchen and the bathroom.
To keep these items and surfaces clean, use a disinfectant wipe on them at least once a week. You can also use a cleaning cloth sprayed with disinfectants to minimize your trash; remember to wash the cloth with warm water and detergent after using, so that they don’t transfer the bacteria back and make things worse when you use them again.
This is where you scrub and rinse off the grime from your body after a long day of coming into contact with dirty objects and pollutants, so it’s no wonder that the bathroom is also one of the dirtiest places in the house. The bathroom is also almost always damp, making it an ideal spot for bacteria to grow and breed. Toothbrushes and bath towels may also harbor germs.
A thorough once-a-week cleaning, complete with disinfection, would do your toilet, bathtub, and shower stall some good. Not only will you end up with a germ-free and fresh-smelling bathroom, but you’ll also keep the ceramics and tiles looking good as new. Similar to the kitchen counters, it’s also a good idea to keep the bathroom floors and sinks dry; you can use a microfiber cloth or mop to accomplish this with ease. With regards to accessories, bathroom towels should be replaced after five to seven days of use, while toothbrushes should be replaced every three months. Shower curtains should also be washed after about a week or two, depending on how many people use the shower and how often.
Pet Bowls And Toys
Your beloved pet’s feeding dish and chew toys can become home a host of bacteria and fungi, including staphylococcus, yeast, and mold. This is especially true if you let your pets roam around outside the house.
To keep your pet’s bowls clean, wash with warm water and dish detergent after each meal, and then disinfect at least once a week. Both hard toys and soft toys should be washed with warm soapy water as well; the schedule is dependent on how often your pet plays with them. It’s also a good idea to wipe or wash your pet’s paws before letting them inside to minimize the dirt and germs that they track inside in your home.
You can’t keep your home 100 percent dirt- and germ-free at all times. However, with regular cleaning and proper attention to the most critical areas, you can at least be more confident that you have minimized the threat to your family’s health.