You may clean often, sterilise regularly and disinfect frequently but your household is still harbouring germs that can make you sick in every corner! Germs spread with the greatest of ease and the only way to control the multiplication of them is to keep on top of disinfecting, knowing exactly where to spray that Dettol! alldayDr look into the dirtiest spots in the home and how to make sure you stay clear of any nasty bugs lurking in the corners of your home sweet home!
Germs in the home
Common germs that call your home their home and incidentally make you sick are the following;
This bacteria is responsible for illnesses such as; certain cases of food poisoning, skin infections, Septicaemia and even Toxic-shock syndrome in severe cases. Staph is spread by close contact and sharing certain items such as; towels or razors. Even though the host of this bacteria may not have symptoms they are still able to spread the germs.
- Yeast and Mould
Yeast can lead to infections such as Athletes foot, Ringworm and Candidiasis, while certain Mould spores can be the cause of chest infections and even Pneumonia. Yeast and Mould like damp areas they multiply and thrive in warm, damp places such as; bathrooms, kitchens etc.
Salmonella is the biggest cause of food poisoning and is more often than not found in the kitchen. Certain food contains this bacteria and not being safe can lead to very nasty stomach bugs. This bacteria can be found on raw meats, poultry and eggs. If live Salmonella bacteria enters your body you will experience Salmonellosis – a nasty case of food poisoning which can even be deadly to the young and elderly.
- E. coli
This bacteria can be found in contaminated food, contaminated water, person to person contact and some contact with animals; Petting Farms etc. Certain types of this bacteria can harm and irritate the lining of your stomach causing nausea, vomiting and other stomach related symptoms.However, E. coli can also cause infections such as UTI, Pneumonia and other illnesses such as Meningitis. Following simple, common hygiene guidelines helps prevent the spreading of this bacteria.
Where the Germs live
No matter how clean your house is, you will find all kinds of invisible particles and bugs live in places you often use. Your next stomach bug, sneeze or sore throat will more than likely come from your home. What should you be aware of so you can control how many viruses you catch?
- Dish Cloths and Sponges
In a recent study NSF International found that the dirtiest place in your house is the kitchen. This is a surprise to all as most people endeavour to ensure that their kitchen is spotless and germ free! The research showed that the most bacteria filled item in your household is found where you prepare your food, this item is your dish cloth or sponge. The study found that everything from Salmonella to Faecal contamination live on your dish cloth! When cleaning dishes, the bacteria are transferred; contaminating eating utensils and leading to stomach bugs. It is recommended that you replace your cloths and sponges every 2 weeks at least. Placing your cloth in the microwave for 2 minutes per day will also kill any bacteria living on the item.
Your mobile is 10 times dirtier than a toilet seat. You check your phone notification on averages 47 times per day, after coughing, touching various objects and coming into contact with other people carrying bacteria. All this is transferred on to your phone. In a survey only 20% of people said they clean their phone daily which is highly concerning considering science shows; MRSA, E. coli and Staphylococcus have been found living on phones. It is recommended that you clean your phone daily using an antibacterial solution, if possible, stretch it to two times per day. For good health clean light switches, TV remotes and other handheld electrical devices using the same method daily.
- Towels and Linen
30% of people will carry Staph bacteria on their body and even MRSA. Sharing hand towels puts your family at risk of infections. Your bed is the first place you go when you are poorly, however, more often than not people forget to change the sheets after having a common cold spreading illness throughout the household. A recent study by YouGov showed that only 33% of the British public change their sheets weekly. It is strongly advised that to prevent infection; families change their bed linen every week and clean in hot water. Hand towels carry thousands of germs, to prevent illness we recommend changing hand towels daily and washing linen at 60c or above.
- Handles and Switches
A household light switch carries 217 bacteria per square inch! Switches are used by everyone in the family, this increases chances of infection within the household and may be the biggest cause of illness in family life. All handles and switches should be cleaned with antibacterial substances on a daily basis to ensure your family are healthy and infection free!
- Carpets and Rugs
Carpets and rugs are filled with bacteria such as E. coli, MRSA and Salmonella. Your carpets collect all kinds of particles such as skin cells, pollen, food and if you have pets even more germs! Every movement on the carpet shifts the germs and particles into the air and into your respiratory system. It is recommended that you clean your carpet weekly with a vacuum using a beater brush, always use fabric sanitiser and if possible, steam your carpets at least once a year – more if you have pets!
How to stay healthy
It is easy to stay on top of the number of bacteria living in your household. It’s time to give notice to those unwanted tenants and follow the simple tips and advice given to you in this article. Keep on top of those sickness days and family spread illnesses with easy to make changes and plenty of antibacterial sprays! Follow the alldayDr blog for more health tips and advice.