The spotLESS Materials Team - May 16, 2022
Is your house making you sick?
— our households can also be home to illness-causing contaminants.
Aclean household means creating a routine or finding a method to most effectively prevent surfaces from getting dirty. In order to prevent illness and infections, we must get rid of these sources of contamination altogether. An unclean home can affect one’s health and exacerbate health issues for those who suffer from breathing problems such as COPD, asthma, chronic bronchitis, or pneumonia.
Bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens can live on bathroom surfaces for up to a week or longer. It is crucial to pay attention to the surfaces of toilets, tubs, sinks and all handles & faucets when cleaning — if not, it can additionally lead to stomach viruses creating intestinal discomfort such as E. coli, norovirus, and salmonella. Also, it can be the cause of bacterial and fungal viruses like athlete's foot, MRSA, staph, and mold/mildew, which can cause breathing problems to worsen or flare up.
With age, our immune systems become weaker — even in the most active and healthy individuals. This makes the probability of being affected by bacteria, microorganisms and viruses even more likely now compared to being younger.
Bacteria and viruses can not only spread from person to person, but also from person to surface then back to person. In a 2016 study, scientists suggested that there are many factors that impact bacteria and virus life, one of which being including the type of surface whether it is solid like a countertop or textured like furniture or clothing. One’s living habits and lifestyle routines can additionally affect how much bacteria and viruses are present such as washing hands, bathing, and regularly cleaning clothes and surfaces.
Consider adding a nature-inspired, preventative coating to your cleaning repertoire. It always seems that the moment after we clean something, it immediately begins to acquire dirt and grime again. In addition to reducing the use of toxic chemicals, we want to reduce time wasted with repetitive cleaning habits. This leads to the motivation behind our product: To adopt new methods and take different approaches to make cleaning more effective and environmentally friendly.
Furthermore, some regions of households are far more subject to contamination and require more effective cleaning than other areas. Oftentimes, we don’t consider how much we touch things everyday, sometimes multiple times a day — here are some areas and appliances within the home that are breeding grounds for bacteria and viruses:
We brush our teeth twice a day, everyday, in order to maintain good dental hygiene, making the toothbrush a commonly touched object within households. Most often, they are found in the bathroom — considered the most moist region of the home. This elevates the probability of bacteria growing here… and on your toothbrush. In addition, flushing toilets can lead to contamination of toothbrushes and other appliances nearby due to bacteria being sprayed out into the air; these germs can stay in the bathroom for at least two hours after flushing before landing on surfaces.
To ensure the cleanliness of your toothbrush, allow it to air out and dry between uses away from toilets and replace it every few months, especially after being sick. Additionally, closing the toilet seat before flushing is extremely important in reducing the spread of bacteria in bathrooms.
Sinks are arguably the most contaminated appliance in the homes, as food particles from plates left to soak or rinsed from dishes serve as a hotbed for illness-causing bacteria like E. coli and salmonella, getting on your hands and spreading elsewhere. Fungus, mold, and other microbes often tend to breed in sinks and toilets because these are the regions most frequently open to water getting stuck and building up.
Don’t forget about the showers and bathtubs! You’d think that the place where we clean ourselves would be one of the more cleaner areas of the household, right? — Not so much. It is a major feeding ground for Bacteria, fungi, and staphylococcus and when water gets trapped, germs grow quickly. The buildup of dirt and grime in this region can lead to Micrococcus, Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Campylobacter, and Enterococcus species.
It goes unnoticed how many handles, knobs, and switches we touch throughout the day; however, they are absolutely covered in bacteria like Staphylococcus which can be harmful in multiple ways if it gets in the eyes, mouth, or open wounds — potentially leading to methicillin-resistant staph aureus (MRSA). In addition to mold, both Trichophyton and Rhinovirus can grow on these fixtures as well, causing ringworm, athlete's foot, or the common cold. Rhinovirus is said to spread very easily and can live on surfaces for days at a time.
WHAT ELSE ARE WE TOUCHING THE MOST?
There are many smaller household utilities we use tremendously often, yet we don’t realize it. Keyboards, for example, are susceptible to attracting germs as a result of eating or sneezing while at the computer, or even sitting down to surf the web without washing your hands.
We use some things outside the house just as much as we do inside the house — phones, wallets, and purses allow for bacteria and viruses to enter the house from outside each day. This can also occur through shoes, backpacks, and other bags.
Additionally, we forget about the TV remote! This device comes into contact not only with everyone and anyone inside the household, the remote itself touches cushions, ottomans, and can even find its way into your pet’s mouth. It can be coughed on and sneezed on too — everyone uses the remote, but nobody ever thinks to clean it!
REASONS TO REGULARLY CLEAN YOUR HOME
Avoid spreading germs: Keeping your house tidy will halt the spread of bacteria and other germs. and help keep you healthy. Paying special attention to areas like the kitchen and bathroom when cleaning in order to stay healthy and avoid illness.
Help stay organized: Knowing where your things are and not wasting time looking for and stressing over finding important personal items when needed. It also helps reduce clutter or build-up of unnecessary, unwanted things that you don't need anymore.
Reduce stress: Looking for personal things is certainly stressful; but, cleaning itself is also a high stress activity. Instead of being anxious over how you never clean, avoid the stress altogether by choosing one day a week to do a quick clean.
Keep out allergies and pests: If one does not regularly clean, dust and other allergens can easily build up in haste fashion. Additionally, bugs and rodents are attracted to areas where we eat and drink — Not only is the presence of pests a nuisance, but they also spread germs and allergens.
Cleaning your home needs to be a top priority in avoiding illness and preventing the spread of bacteria and viruses. It not only gives way to a healthier home environment — but also to a more comfortable and stress-free household as well!