Homeowners want their living space to be clean and beautiful but right now, germ-free is the buzzword. With the COVID-19 scare being more than real, you would want to go the extra mile with cleanliness and hygiene. Every corner of the house can harbour germs and there is also the risk of your home delivered stuff bringing them right in. Or you may carry the virus on your clothes, shoes or even body when you go out. There are hidden dangers everywhere and you cannot be just cautious enough because the resilient virus has more than one way to intrude.
Seeing the silver lining, most of us have plenty of time these days with lockdowns and social distancing rules in place. Why not invest this time at home in making your living space extra clean and germ-free? Doesn’t it make sense to deep clean to save your place from the virus and any other germs already living in the nooks and corners? In any case, summer is here and your seasonal home detox would be due as well. Here is a cleaning checklist that you can use to detox your living space this COVID season.
Start with a complete declutter
Even before you do anything else, start with a complete declutter of your home. Assess it thoroughly room by room, listing things that you haven’t used for a while and will not be using anytime soon. Apart from the furniture and knick-knacks, check your closets and shoe racks as well. Don’t forget to sift through the kitchen cabinets and refrigerator because you need to get rid of everything that you aren’t using. Have a good look in the storage areas and garage too. Once you have the list of the useless stuff ready, think of ways to dispose of it. Donate, sell or throw are the three things you can do with your stuff. So go ahead and clear it off so that you can move ahead with the next stage of your living space detox.
Create space for more light and air
When you get rid of all the extra stuff, you will naturally have more space all over the house. And you can also create more of it by moving around the furniture pieces. Clutter breeds germs, so it makes sense to move things around and have an open kind of decor to bring in more light and air. Open up the curtains and let natural light pour in because it can kill a lot of disease-causing microorganisms. As a bonus, you will have a complete refresh for your place with this small DIY re-decor project. Involve your partner or kids and let it be a family project if you want more open-space re-decor ideas. Working together will certainly bring positivity and pep up everyone’s mood as well.
Be regular with the basics
Detox during the COVID season is not a one time job; rather it is something you will have to do every single day. You have no option other than being regular with the everyday, basic cleaning tasks. Don’t cringe on the thought of cleaning every day, even several times a day if someone comes from outside because this can go a long way for keeping the infection out. Use alcohol-based disinfectants and sanitizers to clean surfaces multiple times a day. Mop the floor every day and pay special attention to germ-prone areas like the kitchen and bathrooms. Use only covered dustbins in your home because open ones can cause germs to spread. Wash or disinfect everything you bring in or get delivered at home, be it fruits and vegetables, groceries or anything else. Be extra careful about pet hygiene if you have one.
Practice extra care with high-touch surfaces
Since the coronavirus scare, a lot has been said and written about high-touch surfaces. These include the ones you touch the most, from doorknobs to handles, doorbells, light switches, doors, windows, wardrobe, chairs and tables. The danger-points in the kitchen include refrigerator and microwave doors, drawers and cabinet handles, coffee machine and kettle. Other areas you need to be extra careful about are toys, toilet seats, cell phones, TV remotes and electronic devices. Though you may see cleaning them as a very small part of the home detox routine, this is perhaps the most important aspect. Be aware of these danger spots and make everyone, particularly, the kids aware too. Sanitize regularly and avoid contact particularly when you come from outdoors.
Look for leaks and cracks
Dampness is among the biggest culprits when it comes to breeding germs. Even though it is not directly linked with COVID infections, you still need to do away with it. Right now, any disease is dangerous because it can compromise immunity and make you vulnerable. So this is the best time to look for leaks and cracks everywhere around the home and get them repaired sooner rather than later. Experts at Davis Plumbing & Drain in Gilbert, Arizona suggest that you should start with the assessment of bathrooms and kitchen and look for signs of leakage everywhere else as well. If you notice mould or dampness on any of the walls or roof, taking quick action is warranted because there could be a major leak behind. This isn’t something you should try resolving with DIY, rather an emergency professional repair is the right thing to do.
Laundry detox is important as well
A part of home detox that is easy to overlook is laundry detox but this is extremely important because clothes are an easy way for germs to hitchhike and enter your living space. First and foremost, change your clothes immediately when you come from outside and set aside the ones taken off for washing. Wear disposable gloves while you collect clothes from around the house for washing. Use lukewarm water, enough soap and a good disinfectant in the washing machine. Dry up the clothes thoroughly by hanging in the open because sunlight and air have the potential to kill germs. Apart from the laundry, clean your shoes regularly and keep them outdoors to soak the sun for killing the germs they may harbour.
Disinfect cleaning aids and equipment
Keeping your living space germ-free is not only about cleaning the place itself; disinfecting the cleaning aids and equipment is equally important because dirty ones can actually spread the germs from one surface to the other. Whether it is your kitchen sponges, fabric mops, cleaning gloves like the ones from unigloves or anything else you use for dusting or cleaning, wash them every day and dry in sunlight to prevent germs from breeding inside them. If anything seems in a bad state, replace it sooner rather than later. It is also a good idea to run your washing machine with disinfectant and warm water once a week for getting rid of the organisms within.
Change bed sheets and linen more frequently
Your bedroom is a place where you spend a major part of the day (night). The germs on your skin and hair are bound to get on the bedsheets and pillows. Also, you shed skin as you sleep and these cells also rest on the sheets. Changing the sheets in your bedrooms regularly, at least once a week, and replacing it with fresh, laundered sheets is a good way to keep disease-causing bacteria and viruses at bay. Do not forget to use a disinfectant while washing them because they tend to be more infected than any other clothing items. Avoid tossing dirty clothes on the bed, particularly when you come from outside. Washing your hands and feet before going to bed is another effective measure to prevent the spread of germs. Apart from bed sheets and pillow covers, be regular with washing the bath linen as well. Washing after every third use is a good idea.
Have hygiene rules in place
No matter how much time and effort you invest in making your home germ-free, it will all be wasted if you don’t have proper hygiene rules in place. Have a stringent policy in place and ensure that every member of the family follows it. For the COVID season, in particular, the guidelines are pretty easy to follow. Make it a rule to wash hands frequently, the more the better. And tell everyone, especially the younger members, the importance of doing it properly. Buy quality hand wash liquids and sanitizers and stock them up on every single washbasin in your living space. Discourage the habit of cluttering and delegate cleaning responsibilities to everyone. Don’t allow shoes in rooms because they are the worst carriers of germs and bacteria.
The importance of cleaning, disinfection and good hygiene cannot be overemphasized right now when we are struggling with a deadly, invisible enemy. When it comes to home detox in the COVID season, the objective is not just to stay safe from the pandemic itself but to keep all kinds of germs at bay. A clean and healthy home protects residents from diseases and boosts immunity as well. Any effort you invest in keeping your living space hygienic and germ-free is, therefore, worthwhile.