Whenever the flu season comes up, people should have a heightened alert for this illness. It's so common that one out of 20 outpatient doctor visits is for this disease. Dealing with this viral infection can be tricky. Getting an annual flu shot can help keep the infection at bay. Other than that, it's important to make your home flu-proof since, as the old adage goes, everything starts here.
Disinfect Germy Spots at Home
The leading landing sites for viruses and bacteria at home include the:
- remote control
- children's toys
- door knobs
If someone at home is sick, it's a must to disinfect every day particularly the telephone and remote control, which are two of the most widely used items. Since influenza virus spreads through touching, it's best to clean off these spots on a daily basis.
Another spot to be on the lookout for is the desk. It's surprising to know that desktops have 400 times more bacteria than a toilet seat. Disinfect your desktop once a week. This will reduce colds and flu by 50 percent.
Replace the Sponge
- It's a must to replace the kitchen sponge every few weeks.
- If that's not possible with your limited budget, the next best thing would be to eliminate the germs in the sponge as often as possible. You can do that by microwaving the sponge for one minute.
- Another option is to run it in the dishwasher.
- It's also a must to make it a habit to rinse the sponge every after use and to squeeze it dry before storing it back on the sponge pan. Remember bacteria thrive better in places that are moist and damp.
Avoid Pushing Germs Around
Dust rags and mops are considered effective cleaning tools. Yes, they do the job of wiping dust and dirt away. But if you don't sanitize them in between uses, you can be using them to spread the germs around the house. It's quite shocking to find that some of the cleanest-looking houses are the ones with the highest germ counts, whereas untidy bachelor pads have low germ counts since the germs get stuck in one place like in the sink or garbage and do not get spread around. This doesn't mean you have to promote lazy housekeeping. This means that you should wash and dry the cleaning tools using hot water to keep the house not only clean but also free of germs.
Examine Cleaning Products
In the market, you'll find a wide range of cleaning products claiming to be anti-bacterial. But it would be a great idea to check out the list of the Environmental Protection Agency that contains 500 products that can disinfect hard and non-porous surfaces against flu virus.
Some of the cleaning products in the list include:
Natural alternatives include:
- lavender oil
- tea tree oil
- lemon juice
- oregano oil
These have properties that can kill germs.
Wash Hands All The Time
It's an essential practice to wash your hands all the time. There are six occasions when people should wash their hands and these include:
- before eating
- before playing with babies
- after being with friends
- after coming home from outside
- after using the bathroom
- after sneezing or coughing