A few years ago, I had some family staying at our home. While watching a movie, one of my nephews stood up in the middle of the room and began puking. I will save you the details, but know it was not a pleasant sight. A few minutes later, his brother joined in. We all stood around in shock; they had obviously come down with the stomach flu. No one likes getting sick, but I must confess that I am a really big wimp when I do catch the dreaded bug. Eager to defend my home, I grabbed my bottle of cleaner and several rags, ready to clean up. In the next two hours, I began sanitizing every surface in the house. The two boys remained in the guest bedroom, and I warded off the germs from spreading any further. After a couple of days, we anxiously waited for the icky feeling in our stomachs to arise, but it never did. Our cleaning had defeated the flu! Whether you are sick from a common cold or a nasty stomach flu, you should always clean your home in these seven ways to keep your home healthy and your body strong.
Change the Sheets
When I am sick, my bed becomes home to both me and my germs. Grab the sheets, blankets, and pillowcases and toss them all in the washer. Even clean up bedding that doesn’t have germs to get all of the laundry done at the same time and ensure that no germs make it out alive. Let them soak for an extra 15 minutes; this will help the water loosen any residue. If your pillows are due for replacing, use this sickness as an opportunity to get new ones.
Throw out the toothbrushes
Toss the brushes and buy yourself some new ones. You can get inexpensive ones at the dollar store, but the toothbrushes are the first things that need to go; don’t even bother trying to clean them.
Sanitize Door knobs
Door knobs are opened and closed all day long by the sick and healthy people in a home. Wipe them down with a cleaning product that contains bleach to disinfect them completely. Wiping off knobs will keep the germs from spreading to others in the home who are not sick.
Scrub the bathroom
The bathroom is my second home when I have the flu and is the first room I clean during recovery. It helps to clean it several times while you are sick to ensure that those germs aren’t making their way out.
Do all of the laundry in the house, but don’t forget any clothes you were wearing while sick. It always helps me to do a “sick” load of laundry full of towels, cleaning rags, rugs, clothes, and sheets. Clean up laundry to make sure every load is full and water is not being wasted.
Clean Refrigerator and Microwave Handles
The refrigerator and microwave handles are often forgotten, but if you are like me, they are opened up more than any doorknobs in the rest of the house. Scrub them down, and don’t forget to wash containers inside the refrigerator, too.
Clean Vacuum Filter
I typically vacuum the entire house after recovering from the flu, but I forget about the filter. After vacuuming the floors and rugs in your house, make sure you remove the filter and clean it, too. You don’t want any germs trapped inside the filter of your vacuum.
Most viruses can only spread by entering your body through your mouth, nose, or eyes. You might keep your hands clean, but as soon as you touch a dirty surface, you have the germs on your hands. Rubbing your eyes, wiping your nose, or eating a snack are ways germs can enter your body. The best way to prevent the spread is to completely get rid of them on all surfaces. Once the flu has coursed through your body, get your house cleaned up to keep your body feeling healthy.
Image Courtesy of Loren Kerns (Flickr)