How Cleaning May Make You Sick & How To Avoid It
Cleaning is a good thing so how can something good end up harming you? Actually, it’s pretty easy once you break it all down. Daily household cleaning is something that must be done if you want to maintain a clean and orderly household, but what you may not know is that the very actions you take each day to get your home clean can make you sick. Luckily, there is a way to keep your home in order as well as stay healthy in the process.
A common action many of us take while we’re cleaning is to open our windows and allow fresh air to come into the house and circulate. This idea seems to make sense but if you choose the wrong day to let Mother Nature come through then you could be doing yourself and your family more harm than good. With each passing year, the Environmental Protection Agency has conducted research showing that the air quality outdoors has continued to get worse. The air outside in many cities is quite poor and if you happen to live in such an area, opening your windows could be a bad move. Air pollution can easily come into the home, bringing with it scores of molds, mildew, animal dander, dust mites, bacteria, pollen, and viruses.
To avoid this problem, check your local weather channel to see what days will be forecast as good air quality days. Choose those days to open your windows. If you want fresh air on a bad air quality day, simply run your air conditioner. Air conditioners contain filters that effectively remove debris and other harmful factors from the inside of your home. Not only will you get air circulating but the AC itself will help you get rid of pollutants you couldn’t eliminate on your own otherwise.
Is a sponge your weapon of choice when it comes to cleaning the kitchen, bathroom, and other surfaces in your home? Then you’ll want a reality check on the possible health hazard you could be presenting. While a sponge is ideal for cleaning up spills, this common cleaning item can also harbor the most bacteria and germs. When it comes to the kitchen in particular, using a sponge to clean can actually make things worse health-wise. The sponge soaks up the bad and often retains it, even after you’ve rinsed it out. Sponges are known for harboring traces of salmonella, E. coli, and even fecal bacteria, which gets spread over your counters each time you clean. This is especially true if you work with raw meat and then wipe down the surface with a sponge afterwards.
To keep your sponge working without the risk, be sure to dip your sponge in a mixture of water and bleach after each use. Let it soak for a few minutes, squeeze the excess out, and allow it to air dry completely. Another trick to prevent bacteria from settling on your sponge is to place it in a small dish filled with a bit of water and set it in the microwave for 1-2 minutes once a week. The heat and boiling of the water will kill bacteria and ensure that your sponge is good to go for its next cleaning.