As a parent, you want to make sure that your kids live in a safe and clean environment.
If only you could keep them inside the house 24/7, you would, just to protect them from disease-causing germs and bacteria.
But the truth is, there could be more of these unwanted micro creatures living inside your house than in your yard… which means, they can get sick even without leaving home.
Some of these germs are beneficial because they help children develop a strong immunity and prevent allergies later in life. But others can make you and your children sick. The bad guys include yeast and mold, Salmonella, E. coli, and staph.
Germs can easily spread from person to person or by touching filthy surfaces and equipment. In fact, the diversity of germs and bacteria thriving in your water heater, freezer and on your kitchen counter is as vast as those on forest floors. Imagine any of these bacteria invading your baby’s little body. Oh dear – that’s the last thing you want to happen.
Germ-proofing Your Home
To stop the spread of germs, you want to focus on cleaning areas in your house where they are likely to thrive:
- Kitchen – sinks, cutting boards, fridge interiors, dish sponges and rags, coffee machines, ovens, etc.
- Bathroom – toilet seat, sinks, tiles
- Home office and living room – keyboards, desks, displays
- Personal items – makeup kit, cell phones, etc.
- Door knobs and handles
According to the National Sanitation Foundation, areas where food is prepared contain more bacteria than other places at home.
It’s important that you clean these areas as often as possible especially if you have an infant or toddler at home who is likely to touch almost anything they can reach, and then rub their nose or eyes, and put anything in their mouth.
Of course, you can’t get rid of all the germs in your house. But you can reduce and prevent them from thriving and taking over your family’s health. Check out the following kid-friendly cleaning tips:
Avoid using sponges to clean surfaces
Here’s the thing – your kitchen sponge may be dirtier than your toilet seat! Sponges are the biggest reservoirs of bacteria in your house. In fact, a study found that regularly cleaned sponges did not have less bacteria than the uncleaned ones. Experts advice replacing your cleaning sponge at least once a week. Better, make use of medical grade wipes that you can dispose of right after using. These wipes are meant to eliminate germs and leave surfaces fresh and clean, unlike sponges and rags which only spread germs even more.
You may want to consider using non-toxic cleaning products especially if you have kids at home. The strong smell of these products is not only irritating, they could also pose health risks to your family. Exposing your kids to toxic chemicals is no less dangerous than exposing them to all sorts of germs.
Keep surfaces dry all the time
Keep plenty of paper towels and tissue in your house, especially in the kitchen and bathroom. Germs thrive in moist environments. By keeping surfaces around your house as dry as possible, you can greatly prevent bacteria from multiplying. Use disinfecting wipes for the door knobs and handles instead of a rag or tissue sprayed with alcohol. Those ready-made wipes in a container makes cleaning and eliminating bacteria so convenient and effective.
It is also medically approved that high humidity creates a great habitat for different germs and fungi, so in this case using high capacity dehumidifier may be your best decision.
Implement strict hand-washing policy
Keeping hands clean is one of the best ways to prevent illnesses and the spread of germs in your house. Teach your kids how to properly clean their hands while they are still young so they get to keep the habit until they grow old.
Choose the right cleaning products
There are tons of cleaning products available these days, most of them claim to be the best. Little we know, only 7% of top cleaning products make toxicity information available to the consumers. Make sure that you are using those that are EPA-tested. If you want, you can actually make your own cleaning solutions. Lemon juice, baking soda, thyme, essential oils coming from tea tree, lavender and oregano, hydrogen peroxide and vinegar are inexpensive, effective, and more importantly – safe cleaning agents you can try. Try to dig deeper in cleaning products you use. Parents are often wondering how to choose the best baby laundry detergent, baby- friendly dishwasher gel and so on.
Your home should be the safest place for your kids, and not the other way around. Unfortunately, almost every part of your house contains hundreds, if not thousands, of bacteria, from the door knobs and handles to the desk, tables, chairs, counters, sinks, and floors – they are all happily thriving there.
By knowing the germ hot spots in your home, using the right cleaning supplies, and avoiding highly toxic chemicals – you can ensure proper surface hygiene and protect your kids from getting sick.
Author Bio: Megan is a writer, DIY geek, time management and works planning expert.She is happy mom of 2 who works with Grizzly Tarps. She writes just about anything, from giving you an advice on how to go about your date to sharing her personal experience in relationship how tos.
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