Getting the professionals in, of course, is the perfect way to have everything spotless in the home or at the office, but what about you? These tips will help you to keep on top of germs and stay healthy, especially if you can make them a regular part of your routine.
After all, in this beautiful weather, who doesn’t want to be enjoying it?
- Wash your hands the right way. Believe it or not, 97% of people didn’t meet their standards of acceptable hand washing according to a study by the Department of Agriculture. So, to get it right: wet your hands, lather up your soap and scrub for 20 seconds between fingers and under your nails, then air dry or use a clean hand towel.
- Keep nails short – less than 3 mm long – as nails are an absolute harbour for germs, even more so than the rest of your hands.
- Look after your toothbrush: replace it every three months as the older it is, the more bacteria it harbours. Rinse it thoroughly every time you use it (you could even use mouthwash if you wanted to), keep it dry and uncovered, and don’t share it with anybody else!
- You know how unpleasant a not-quite-dry towel or dampish bedding can be? Well, not for bacteria, dust mites and bed bugs – they love it! So, to keep yourself happier than them, wash towels ideally every two days, and bedding every week – on a hot wash.
- Take off your shoes before you come inside. It’s common sense really – wearing your outdoor shoes inside brings in all the bacteria they’ve picked up. One study showed that after two weeks 10 pairs of previously new shoes had an average of 2,887 bacteria on the inside, but 421,000 bacteria on the outside. You could remove up to 99% of these by washing outdoor shoes with cold water and laundry detergent, but surely, it’s easier just to take them off…?
- We know that towels attract bacteria like iron filings to a magnet, but did you know that your kitchen sponge is just the same? Would you believe that a kitchen sponge has an average of 54 billion cells per cubic centimetre? You could solve it by putting your sponge in the dishwasher – effective because the high temperatures kill the bacteria – or, you could use a plastic brush as they dry out more quickly than sponges.
- Clean your mobile phone regularly. After all, we take them everywhere with us and one study found that 101 out of 105 mobile phones tested had a mixture of bacteria – so keep it clean.
And that’s it. Simple, effective advice to keep the germs at bay, no matter how hard they try!
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