We often think that vacuuming, dusting, and sweeping our house is enough to keep it hygienic. After all, if your house is clean, it’s hygienic, right? The truth is that it’s a bit more complicated than that. While doing all of these things regularly may give your house the appearance of being clean, that cleanliness is often very surface-level. Proper hygiene requires a bit more. Luckily, keeping your house as hygienic as possible doesn’t need to be a big deal. That’s why we’re going to be sharing tips on how to do it.
- Get rid of insects and rodents
- Have a cleaning schedule
- Deep clean
- Keep germs and viruses out of the house
- Cleaning the house—the guide for day-to-day cleaning
- Frequently Asked Questions
Get rid of insects and rodents
We all know that insects and rodents are generally very unhygienic. Any type of pest that enters your home could bring many diseases and problems along with it. That’s why it’s so important to keep your house free of pests. Of course, you may still have minor nuisances, like mosquitos, but you need to make every effort possible to rid your house of pests like cockroaches or rats. There are many ways to do this, such as calling an exterminator or trying natural ways of getting rid of them. You can also try a device like the Riddex Sonic Plus.
Have a cleaning schedule
Certain things, like sweeping the floors, or even cleaning the kitchen and bathroom, need to be done daily or weekly. Other things, however, need to still be done regularly, but not as regularly as your normal cleaning tasks. These include things like washing your duvet inner or getting your carpets cleaned. Unfortunately, because we don’t do these tasks as often, we tend to forget about them, which means we can go too long without doing them. Having a cleaning schedule will help you keep track of what needs to be done when so that you can stay on top of things.
We’ve spoken about the regular cleaning tasks and the slightly bigger tasks that you don’t need to do as often. Now it’s time to get serious and talk about deep cleaning. Look, deep cleaning your house is a big job, and it’s often not fun. However, it is one of the best ways of ensuring that your house remains thoroughly clean and hygienic. Luckily it’s not something you need to do very often. It’s recommended to deep clean your house once to four times a year. If you’re not quite sure what deep cleaning entails, you can click here for a checklist.
Keep germs and viruses out of the house
Another way of keeping your house hygienic is to ensure you don’t bring any foreign germs or viruses into the house. It is, therefore, a good idea to sanitize before entering your house. Of course, this is now more important than ever, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We don’t always realize how easy it is to bring any type of virus or disease into our homes, so it’s certainly something to be mindful of. Don’t stress too much – there are ways to keep Covid-19 out of your house.
Cleaning the house—the guide for day-to-day cleaning
Sure, everyone knows that dusting, vacuuming, or washing the windows will make your house clean. Let’s take a look at how you should clean each house room for most hygienic results.
Cleaning the kitchen
The kitchen is one of the rooms that require the most attention, time, and energy for cleaning. Practically, every surface will attract germs, insects, viruses, and other pests. To keep the kitchen as hygienic as possible, you need to aim to kill germs and viruses, especially during the COVID-18 pandemic. Here are some tips:
- Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds before you touch surfaces
- Use an alcohol sanitizer (60% or high) to sanitize your hands. You can use soap and water if alcohol sanitizer isn’t available.
- Wipe down all kitchen surfaces: counters, tabletops, and all surfaces you touch (microwave button, handles, doorknobs). If possible, use an EPA-approved disinfectant.
- Wash all silverware and dishes before and after using them
Sponges can carry mold and thousands of food pathogens and germs if not cleaned and stored correctly. Stay on the safe side and replace sponges once a week.Otherwise, try these tips:
- Place the sponge in the dishwasher at high temperature and drying cycle on
- Wet the sponge and run the microwave for 1-2 minutes
- Squeeze the sponge out after every use and keep it in a place for air drying
Cloth dish towels
Wash the cloth dish towels on a hot temperature cycle. Even if you only use them to wipe silverware and plates, they can still carry viruses and germs.
- Never use the same cutting board to cut fruits and raw meat
- Keep veggies and raw meat away from each other to reduce the risk of cross-contamination. You might spread E.coli, salmonella, and various dangerous bacteria
- Wash the cutting boards with water and soap before using
- Clean and sanitize all surfaces after cooking. You will remove food bacteria such as Campylobacter, which causes diarrhea. You also stop insects from feeding on the leftovers.
- Wipe countertops with soap and water and sanitize them with bleach. Add one teaspoon of chlorine to a quart of water to kill lingering pathogens.
- Wash the dishes and utensils right after using them.
Cleaning the bedroom
Just because you sleep alone in a bed doesn’t mean that you’re all alone. Dust mites, dust, and even pet dander are also in the bed with you. Even if you’re not allergic to pet dander and bed bugs, you can still become uncomfortable because of them. Waste and eggs make reasons for the discomfort. Don’t forget about fungi, dead skin, hair, and pollen—they can affect the health of people with allergies.
Here’s what you can try to remove dust mites:
- Use zippered plastic mattress and pillow covers
- Vacuum the uncovered mattress on a regular basis
- Wash all bedding once a week in hot water (130F degrees and up)
Cleaning the bathroom
As expected, the toilet and bathtubs are home to many pathogens. It’s why bathrooms have been located outside the house for so many years. Here are some things to remember for a hygienic bathroom.
We know that you clean the bowl and seat regularly, but how often do you also clean the flush handle? Enterococcus, rotavirus, and many other pests can lie on the toilet handle. Enterococcus can cause bacterial gastroenteritis, whereas rotavirus is the primary cause of diarrhea among children. Covid-19 can survive on plastic and steel toilet handles for three days.
Use a 60% alcohol solution to sanitize the flush handle and remove virus particles of SARS-COV-2.
Floor to ceiling
Mold can grow in the bathroom and cause watery and itchy eyes and even asthma attacks. Trichophyton is a fungus that causes ringworm and athlete’s foot. Here’s what to do to remove mold and trichophyton from your bathroom:
- Use a disinfectant made to kill mold and fungus
- Wipe down the tub/shower walls and curtains after bathing/showering. Use a towel or a squeegee.
- Throw soiled tissues away and empty the wastebasket every single day. Never leave them around the room or anywhere else.
- Rhinovirus (which causes the common cold) is highly contagious and spreads when people touch contaminated surfaces. Naturally, they will touch their nose, eyes, and mouth afterward. Clean the bathroom regularly.
Viruses and bacteria spread on used surfaces relatively easily. Here’s how to clean various surfaces in your house:
Doorknobs can carry staph (Staphylococcus aureus), which can be harmful when it gets in the eyes, mouth, scrapes. If you touch the doorknobs all the time without washing and disinfecting your hands, you can also spread the coronavirus quickly. Wipe the doorknobs with an antibacterial cleaner or 60% alcohol solution.
Paints are made with volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which alter indoor air quality. Chemicals found in textile, upholstery, and building materials can cause health issues. Lead was banned in 1978, so new homes shouldn’t have any.
If you live in an old house, hire a licensed risk assessor/buy a lead home test kit to see if there’s lead in your home. Should the results be positive, you need to use lead removal products. You can find them in hardware stores or ask professionals to remove them for you.
Carpets and rugs
Many carpets, adhesive, and padding require installation that generate the harmful VOCs. Throat irritation, discomfort in the eyes and nose are common symptoms caused by the VOCs.
- Ask professionals to air the carpet before installation
- Circulate air in the room by opening the windows and doors. Use fans to improve circulation.
- Look for carpets and related products with a low-VOC emitting level
- Vacuum carpets and rugs as often as possible
- Use an air purifier or house plants to improve indoor air quality
- Shake out the mats and steam clean them to remove viruses
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the best disinfectant for surfaces in the house during COVID-19?
Regular products you use to clean and disinfect your house will also remove the virus from the household surfaces. However, if you want to disinfect households with suspected or confirmed COVID19, you need to use surface virucidal disinfectants. Products formulated with ethanol (over 70%) and 0.05% sodium hypochlorite (NaCl) are efficient in those situations.
What does cleaning a house mean?
When you clean, you will remove dirt, germs, and impurities from surfaces. You won’t kill germs but only remove them. Even so, eliminating the germs decreases their numbers and the risk of spreading infection.
What does disinfection mean?
When you use chemicals, such as EPA-registered disinfectants, you kill germs on the surface. Disinfection isn’t the same as cleaning dirty surfaces and removing germs. Keep in mind that disinfection follows the cleaning. Therefore, you begin with cleaning dirty surfaces, eliminating germs, and continuing with disinfection which kills germs on surfaces. It’s one of the best ways to reduce the risk of spreading infection.
Should you hire a professional cleaning company?
Regular cleaning keeps the environment fresh and the people using the living space healthy. Disinfected and dusted surfaces reduce the risk of people catching infections or getting sick. Whether it’s your home or the office that requires cleaning, we recommend you hire the professionals at least for deep-cleaning services. They use commercial-grade products, equipment and have excellent skills in leaving a house immaculate and germ-free.
Is there a downside to cleaning?
As with almost everything in life, overdoing something will have downsides. Over cleanliness weakens the body’s immune system. Since you’re killing most germs on surfaces in your home, the body won’t be able to fight germs anymore. You should find the balance between cleaning your home in the best way possible without weakening your body’s immune system.