With COVID-19 still looming large around the globe, keeping a clean home has never been a bigger priority. While washing your hands and using disinfectant products to sanitize surfaces is a good place to start, even the most conscientious individuals are likely to still be accidentally cross-contaminating their home, putting yourself and your loved ones in harm’s way.
In order to protect yourself, here’s what experts want you to know about the ways you’re spreading germs in your home without realizing it. And to make sure you’re keeping your house virus-free
Your cell phone may feel like it’s practically part of your body, but if you’re bringing it into grocery stores or other crowded places with you and not disinfecting it upon returning home, odds are you’re cross-contaminating your space.
So, how is this happening? “We touch the tuna can in the store, and then the phone, the door on the milk case, and then our phone,” explains public health expert Carol Winner, MPH, MSE, founder of Give Space. “All it takes, potentially, is a touch of not just the phone, but pretty much any surface in the house where we have set the phone” to cross-contaminate a space.
Coronavirus can live on some surfaces for up to three days, meaning the mail you bring inside could be harboring pathogens without you even realizing it.
To avoid making this mistake, experts suggest leaving any non-essential mail outside of the home for a few days before bringing them into your living space.
We know how exciting it is to open a package, but you could be putting your health at risk by doing so.
If you want to stay safe, Winner recommends opening packages “away from the living area and tossing them in the recycle bins,” then wiping any surfaces they may have touched with either soap and water or a disinfectant cleaner. When possible, launder or wipe down the contents inside the package for an extra layer of protection.
4. Touching your hands
If you don’t immediately wash your hands or use hand sanitizer when you return from running errands, your home could become cross-contaminated in no time.
“Think of the virus like glitter,” says Winner. “You will get cross-contamination from walking into the house and touching kitchen countertops, or the TV remotes, and worse, your face.”
Gloves may keep coronavirus from getting on your skin, but they can also be a surprising source of cross-contamination in your home.
“The longer you wear your gloves, the more unfamiliar objects and bacteria you’ll come into contact with,” explains health coach and licensed medical acupuncturist Jamie Bacharach, Dipl. Ac. If you’re wearing the same gloves you wore outside into your home, you’re likely to get anything you touched while out onto your interior surfaces, too.
If you want to keep your feet warm at home, have a pair of slippers handy—but leave those shoes at the door.
“Tons of bacteria live on your shoes, and when you walk around your house with them on, you are essentially spreading that throughout your house,” explains Kevin Mahoney, CEO of Aura Prep,
Keeping yourself safe during the pandemic may mean doing a little more laundry than usual.
Since clothing can potentially harbor the virus, your outfit could be the culprit. “When you’re in the house and lay down on the couch, you have now cross-contaminated,” explains Mahoney.
8. Emptying your pocket or purse without cleaning its contents.
Resting items from your pocket or purse on a surface in your home might be spreading the virus or other germs throughout your space.
“You may have put your hands in your pocket or the contents were already dirty to start off with; this can lead to cross-contamination in your household,” explains Mahoney.
9. Cleaning cloth
Those rags you’re using to clean your house could actually be spreading bacteria and viruses.
“Microfiber tools are made to attract and capture up to 99 percent of dirt, bacteria, and other pathogens, while cotton fiber tools are made to attract 33 [percent],” explains cleaning expert Sean Parry, director of U.K.-based home cleaning company Neat Services. That means if you’re using the latter, you’re more likely to transfer bacteria or viruses from surface to surface, says Parry.
10. Mop Bucket
That bucket of dingy mop water is just as bacteria-laden as it looks.
“Water buckets for rinsing mop heads hold dirty water, which can easily drip onto surfaces, get on the cleaner’s hands or gloves, or directly transfer pathogens back to the mop head,” says Parry. To limit cross-contamination, he recommends spraying disinfectant spray directly onto your floor and regularly replacing or laundering your mop pad.
11. Non-HEPA Vacuum
All vacuums aren’t created equal when it comes to keeping your space clean. While a regular vacuum can possibly spread contaminants around, “HEPA filters can capture dust, mold, bacteria, and spores that are in your home,” explains Parry, who notes that “this is essential in keeping dust from resettling and re-contaminating floors or furniture.”
THEO10 Disinfectant Spray
The Theo10 team is proud to announce our new product, THEO10 Disinfectant Spray.
Theo10 Disinfectant is a broad-spectrum disinfectant and antimicrobial agent. It is very easy to use as there is no need to scrub it in or wipe clean as it leaves no residue and it is 100% natural and water based, it causes no skin irritation and can be used on any surface.
It contains ingredients recommended by WHO, NEA and EPA in specific concentrations.
Theo10 disinfectant and sanitizing products have been tested to kill beyond 99.99% of bactericidal activities as per European Standards laid out in BS EN 1040:2005
• Kills beyond 99.99% of germs & bacteria
• 100% Natural
• Leaves the user with a mild Frangipani scent
It is the utmost importance to ensure a virus-free living environment especially in critical times like this. With the convenience of a disinfectant spray, you will have the ease to disinfect the 11 places mentioned above, starting with your cell phones, with just a pull of your finger. Our disinfectant spray has been tested on common materials such as plastic, wood, and metals and proven for its 99,99% germ-killing efficacy.