Directly or indirectly, you come into contact with the surfaces in your house every day as there are literally hundreds of them. Obviously we all want to avoid our children coming into contact with dirt, bacteria, viruses, and fungi, but if we are not aware of the different surfaces that are affected it can be difficult to know what to do about it. Some microbes are not dangerous, but to help you overcome this potential health hazard, here are the surfaces you should be paying most attention to.


If you take a walk around your home and count the handles on everything you will be astounded at the amount there actually is. Your doors, cupboards, drawers, toilet, kettle, pots and pans, and taps, all have handles; they are everywhere. Every time somebody puts a hand on a handle the potential is there to spread bacteria and viruses. Washing your handles with a solution of vinegar and water is a possibility (or a chemical cleaner if you don’t mind the risk it may pose), but the task is huge. Your best bet is to make sure everybody washes their hands with a bacterial soap as often as possible, and to wipe the handles with a disinfectant every few days. Handles really are a problem.


Less of a problem for adults (we tend not to crawl round too much), but still a problem for children are floors. These are the largest surfaces we have, and we contaminate them with everything from animal faeces to spilled sugar. Regular vacuuming with a high powered vacuum cleaner or steam cleaning your solid floors with a good quality steam cleaner will solve most of your flooring problems; and help your children crawl around in relative safety. However, you should help things by removing shoes before you go indoors, and you should only give your animals access to non-play areas.

Kitchen Surfaces and Tables

Even though they are the places that we spend the most time cleaning, our kitchen surfaces and tables will always be somewhere that bacteria and viruses are likely to be lurking. The mere contact with a joint of meat or a lump of cheese will mean that bacteria have likely started to spread, and as many children seem to have an aversion to plates and breadboards when preparing food, this is a big problem. You can buy green table and kitchen surface cleaners that will do a fine job where they can reach, but kitchen surfaces, draining boards, and sinks are difficult to clean. There are so many inaccessible areas to cope with, and this is another application where a steam cleaner from somewhere like is the most efficient choice. The hot steam will get into every possible gap, and start to kill the germs immediately; it will also make the job much easier while giving you a professional result.


Yes, that’s right, cutlery. Every time you prepare food or eat it you are likely to meet some kind of germ, be it a bacterium, virus, or even fungus. Your cutlery will add to your exposure as they are, naturally, handled all of the time. In the same way that handles spread germs through touch, so does cutlery. Luckily, cutlery is much easier to cope with, and if you do not reuse dirty cutlery you should be OK. Washing cutlery in hot water is generally enough to stop any spread of germs, but you need to make sure that you never share cutlery that has been used by somebody else. If you do, you will be passing those germs to them or they will be passing them to you.

The NHS website tells us that about 40% of reported food-related outbreaks of infection in Europe occur in the home, and this tells us how difficult it is to keep our homes completely hygienic. However, when it comes to your children, you will want to do the best you can about home hygiene, and being aware of the places you need to clean the most will help you do just that.