Are you keeping your household clean and disinfected to the standards of the CDC during a COVID-19 outbreak? I’m sure most of you reading this know how to clean, but this virus needs a lot more than some spring cleaning! I wanted to share with you what I discovered from the CDC, on how to keep your house clean with an infected member. Let’s learn how to keep your family safe from the spread of the virus.
Cleaning and Disinfecting
Let’s start with the fact that cleaning and disinfecting are NOT the same thing. Cleaning removes dirt and impurities but does not kill germs. Disinfecting uses chemicals to kill surface germs but does not always clean dirty surfaces. If you clean the infected area first and then disinfect, which is highly recommended, it lowers risk of spreading. Disposable gloves should be worn while cleaning and disinfecting. Upon removal of gloves, hands should be washed immediately.
The CDC specifically states, ”For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective. Diluted household bleach solutions can be used if appropriate for the surface. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted. Prepare a bleach solution by mixing: 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water or 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water.” Make sure you are regularly disinfecting high traffic areas such as door handles, counter tops, sinks, toilets, light switches, etc.
Laundry and Linens
When handling infected laundry, ensure disposable gloves are worn. If those aren’t available, wash your hands immediately after. Do not shake laundry when soiled, this will minimize it’s travel through the air. Wash and dry clothes on highest temperature, if possible. This would be a good time to take a peak at your manufacturer’s tag on any clothing, comforters, drapes etc. Don’t forget to disinfect the hamper or dispose of it.
If you weren’t washing your hands before… judging… now is the time to start! Make sure you are washing your hands for at least 20 seconds (this may be obvious but with soap and water). When using hand sanitizer, make sure it’s at least 60% alcohol. Avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands. Blowing your nose? Wash your hands. Just used the restroom? Wash your hands. Preparing food or about to eat? Wash. Your. Hands.
Educating yourself on the virus is important in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. I hope you feel better prepared on how to clean and disinfect your household while caring for someone infected. Now, spread the word, not the virus! Help everyone understand how to prevent the spread of this virus.