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How to Eliminate Germs Properly After Illness in Home

When your housemate or family member is suffering from a virus like the cold or flu or any other contagious illness, it can feel pretty grim in the home. You feel like there are germs watching you sleep. When the person recovers, you are not out of the woods yet. It is important to prevent the illness from spreading, so get cleaning! We assume the immediate defense is to eliminate the spread of the virus or contagions through personal hygiene (frequent hand washing). Nope. Proper cleaning is still required for the home as well. Did you know some viruses can live on hard surfaces for up to two weeks?

elaundry hint: Limit close proximity to infected person with ropes 🙂

To slay viruses, bacteria and germs on surfaces around the home, a disinfectant is required. A quick wipe with mild cleaners and water may make surfaces appear clean however their active ingredients will not eliminate germs. Typically a germ destroying disinfectant will contain chlorine bleach.

  • Make your own germ killer by adding 2 tablespoons of chlorine bleach to 4 cups of water.
  • Chlorine bleach can lose cleaning properties when exposed to air over time, so mix fresh before use.

Warning: Never mix bleach with detergents or chemicals. Gaseous vapors may be harmful.

How to Use Disinfectant Cleaners at Home

When using your homemade bleach formula try filling a spray bottle for easier application. Be careful however not to catch clothes or surfaces that may damage when spraying.

  • Always use gloves
  • Avoid landfill and use a clean, white cotton cloth the can be washed and reused
  • Never use a sponge for disinfecting as crevices in the sponge can still harbor bacteria
  • Bleach can damage some surfaces so make sure to do a test area first
  • Let stand on surface for at least three minutes and then rinse the surface with plain clean water

For items like remotes and computer keyboards, use a cotton swab dipped in the disinfectant or wrap dipped cloth over a credit card like item to swipe through tight areas and lift dirt.

Here is 5 Areas that need proper attention to disinfect

When we feel sick we think of our warm, cozy bed. Naturally, we are drawn to a place of comfort to heal. Fast track to the family recovery and you have another concern. It is so important to tackle contaminated bed linen. Pillowcases are in special need of attention being in such close contact to mouth and nose. The same applies to kids cuddly toys and blankies. Unless your bed linen is white, you will need to use a non chlorine based disinfectant with your wash. Be sure to read washing instructions carefully for use including the correct water temperature to kill germs. Use rubber gloves when handling soiled laundry. Wash items immediately and discourage cross-contamination of clothes by avoiding communal washing hamper use. Clean high use items like phones, remote controls, keyboards, light switches, door knobs and keys with disinfectant. Keep antibacterial wipes handy for daily use.

There is no place like the couch, especially when we are weary. Wash contaminated upholstery and accessories, better yet, simply cover the furniture with washable sheets or blankets for use while ill and change frequently. Suggest bed use only and no couch and TV for the infected and you can expect to get yelled at.

The bathroom can become a problem area for germs everyday however this problem is multiplied with a sick person in the house. Fortify protection against germs in the bathroom, administer frequent disinfecting as vomiting and diarrhea can leave nasty little particles everywhere. Yuk! Use disinfectant on the usual suspects like toilets and surfaces. but pay attention also to the handles, door knobs, light switches and bath mats in the room. Throw out that toothbrush when you have recovered!

Limit utensils and dish use by the infected person. Save contamination by cooking their chicken soup and washing used items in a high heat automatic dishwasher or use the method of dipping in disinfectant solution if hand washing.

Keep disinfectant wipes handy in the car to decontaminate surface on seats, dashboard and gears after a road trip. Wipe areas like the steering wheel, keys and key fobs after a trip, take a few minutes to wipe down the inside and outside door handles, dashboard controls, garage door openers.

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