Keeping a clean and healthy home is essential. Regular cleaning and sanitation are now even more critical with the COVID-19 pandemic. The virus that causes COVID-19 can live on surfaces for more than twenty-four hours. Touching contaminated surfaces and direct contact with respiratory droplets from an infected person can transmit the virus to you. It is a scary notion because your home should be a safe place for your family.
From frequent sanitation to installing an air purifier in your home, you can significantly reduce the risks of the virus getting in your household.
1. Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces.
Since the virus can survive on surfaces for days, it is vital to clean and disinfect high touch surfaces regularly. This precaution can lower the risk of infection in your home.
High touch surfaces include but are not limited to the following:
- Kitchen surfaces
- Bathroom surfaces
- Light switches
- Remote controls
- Cellular phones
Clean dirty surfaces with soap and water. Disinfect them with products that contain 70% alcohol or bleach. Take note that cleaning and disinfecting are two different things. Cleaning removes dirt and impurities. On the other hand, disinfecting kills germs. While cleaning reduces your risk of COVID-19 infection, disinfecting further lowers it. Always follow the directions of the cleaning products that you use to ensure its effectiveness.
If you cannot find disinfectants at stores, you can follow the CDC’s recommended bleach solution. Mix five tablespoons bleach per gallon of room temperature water. Pour the mixture in a bottle spray and shake. Spray it on high touch surfaces for disinfection. Let it sit for ten minutes and wipe with a wet cloth or tissue.
2. Handle food and grocery with care.
While it is not clear whether you can get infected from food packaging, they are considered surfaces where the virus can thrive. Another risk is your proximity to people when you go to the grocery. Handle food and groceries with extra care to lower the chances of infection.
Here are some extra steps that you can take when you get home after you buy some food and groceries.
- Take off extra packaging. Dispose of them in a covered bin.
- Transfer food from take-outs to a clean plate. Dispose of the take-out containers in a covered bin. Do the same steps for food deliveries.
- Disinfect canned packagings.
- Wash vegetables and fruits thoroughly under running water.
- Wash your hands with soap and water.
3. Do not bring work or street clothes inside.
The best defense against the virus is to stay at home. If you have to go out for essentials or work, make sure to practice social distancing and wear a mask. Do the following to avoid bringing the virus in your home.
- Take only the essentials with you. Leave what you can at work.
- Handle possible contaminated items with care.
- Leave your work shoes outside. Prepare a foot bath beforehand to disinfect shoes.
- Disinfect your phone, eyewear, and other items you have to bring inside. Leave your purse and other things in the car, if possible.
- Take off your clothes immediately and put them in the wash. If possible, leave them in a laundry bin at the garage.
- Shower immediately.
Have everyone come inside using the same door. The ideal entrance is near a sink where people can wash their hands with soap and water. Limit visitors, unless necessary.
4. Do the laundry regularly.
Now more than ever, you will need to change and wash your bedsheets, clothes, and towels regularly. Launder items with detergent and warm water. Dry them completely.
After you do the laundry, you must wash your hands thoroughly. Clean and disinfect the hamper as well.
If you do your laundry outside, be sure to do the following:
- Prepare your laundry before you leave.
- Choose a time when customers are fewer.
- Maintain proper physical distancing and wear a face mask.
- Fold your laundry when you get home.
- Do not forget to wash your hands with soap and water.
- Wash and disinfect the laundry bag that you used.
5. Use air purifiers to help reduce air contaminants.
Air purifiers can help reduce airborne viruses in your home or any closed space. The more scientists understand about the COVID-19 illness, the more it becomes apparent that aerosol transmission is possible. A person does not need to be coughing to expel infected droplets. These droplets can stay in the air, and anyone who breathes them can get infected too. In addition to cleaning high touch surfaces in your home, purifying the air you breathe from air contaminants should be part of your home plan.
It is crucial to have a plan on how to keep your home and family safe. Always be on top of the situation and stay vigilant. You can never be too careful against an enemy that you cannot see.