What Needs to Be Cleaned After Being Sick
If you are finally feeling better after a bad cold, or worse the flu, take precautions to clean and disinfect immediately. Why? Flu viruses can live on surfaces for up to 24 hours, and cold viruses can survive on indoor surfaces for up to seven days. If left unclean, you can get sick again or make other family members ill.
Any sheets and blankets used during your illness should be washed immediately upon feeling better. If your pillows are washable, toss them in also.
Think about it. You have been coughing and sneezing while lying in bed. Your bedding has absorbed all of that harmful bacteria. Get rid of nasty germs by washing everything in the hottest water possible.
Because of sweat and other bacteria accumulated from lying in bed, this is a perfect time to deep clean your mattress. Sprinkle baking soda on it and let it sit for a couple of hours. Then vacuum and make your bed with fresh, clean linens. Your bed is ready for you to have a restful night of sleep. Finally!
Hand towels, bath towels, washcloths, and any robes or loungewear worn need a proper washing also. As with bedding, wash all these items in the hottest cycle.
When someone is sick in your family, give them a separate towel to use. Or use disposable hand towels. This will help lessen the spread of a virus between family members.
And don’t forget your toothbrush. If it is a cheap one, throw it away and use a new one. If it is a more expensive one, fill a cup with hydrogen peroxide and soak the bristles for 30 minutes. This will kill any lingering germs. Your clean toothbrush needs a sanitary holder. So make sure to wash your toothbrush holder in the dishwasher, or by hand with hot soapy water if it is not dishwasher safe.
Sink handles, toilet handles, door knobs and light switches get touched frequently. Regardless of how many times you washed your hands, it is easy for these things to become contaminated. Also, don’t forget the remote control. It may already be one of the germiest places in your home, without having the flu.
Wipe down all cell phones and computers after being ill. Combine a mixture of isopropyl alcohol and distilled water in a spray bottle. Never spray directly on your phone or computer screen. Instead, spray the solution on a microfiber cloth and then wipe surfaces down.
If your kids were sick, wash and disinfect all toys that they have played with during their illness. Toss stuffed animals into the wash on a gentle cycle. Clean legos and other durable, plastic toys in the dishwasher, by placing them in a mesh laundry bag on the top rack. If you have a steamer, use it to clean delicate toys.
As you are cleaning, make sure to open the blinds and curtains to get a little bit of sunshine in your home. Sunlight will not only boost your mood after being sick, but it also may help to kill microbes in your home. And if the weather is right, an open window or door will help circulate fresh air inside.
Your home will now be clean and healthy. Enjoy!