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Top 5 Places Germs Hide in Your Home

by Megan Breinig

The subways, streets, schools, and public facilities are all common places that you probably watch out for to avoid getting sick…but do you know that your home may be an even bigger breeding ground for germs? Here is a list of the 5 most common places to find nasty germs in your home, along with tips on how to evict these pesky bunkmates.

top places to find germs in your home

1) The Kitchen Sink

Normally when people think about household germs they think of the toilet. The truth is your kitchen is probably dirtier! Sponges and dishrags are common hosts for bacteria. The damp environment and scraps of microscopic food allow germs like E. coli, Salmonella, Pseudomonas, and Staphylococcus to thrive. Drains and sink bowls are also common germ spots.

Many people overlook their sink and fail to sanitize it properly. Running water and a quick wipe down doesn’t cut it. So next time you are thinking about having a family dinner you might consider either moving it to the bathroom…or cleaning your kitchen with the following techniques.

How to Clean It

Use dish-detergent to rub down your sink and eliminate the remnants of food and other microbial materials. Then rinse the sink with diluted bleach and water for about 10 minutes to get rid of the adamant clingers. Do this about once a week to keep your sink sanitized. Household cleaners with bleach can be used in order to clean up your kitchen. Chlorine, hydrogen peroxide, white distilled vinegar, and baking soda are also common household items that will get the job done.

2) TV Remotes and Controllers

When you’re sick, we know what you do…plop down on the couch and watch TV. And what do you hold? The remote. TV remotes are dropped on the floor, coughed on, sneezed on, and touched by everybody in the house. It is a common breeding ground for germs and is seldom cleaned.

How to Clean It

Use alcohol or sanitizing wipes. Maintain a clean remote with good hand-washing habits and a weekly wipe down.

3) Your Toothbrush

A toothbrush is a perfect spot for germs to hide! It’s damp, placed into your mouth twice a day, and located in the bathroom. When you use your toothbrush you set it back down damp. This gives germs from the sink, bathtub, and toilet the opportunity to gather on it until it is placed in your mouth again. Yuck!

How to Clean It

Let your toothbrush breathe by finding a dry spot away from your bathroom like your dresser or a nightstand. Take a swig of anti-bacterial mouthwash before brushing – this will kill a large number of bacteria in your mouth before you get to brushing. You can also store the toothbrush in antibacterial mouth rinse in between brushes to keep it germ-free. It is also recommended by the American Dental Association that you switch your toothbrush every two to three months

4. Coffee Table and desks

After a long hard day, it feels nice to come home, lie back on the couch and kick your feet up on the coffee table. What’s not so relaxing is that your shoes can transfer salmonella, campylobacter, and other fecal bacteria on your tables and floors. Your desk is also germ heaven; think about how often you actually wipe down and sanitize your desk at work or home. That’s right, it’s time to do some cleaning….

How to Clean It

Leave your shoes at the door. Wipe down your coffee table regularly with sanitizing products. It is best to use bleach for glass tables along with Windex. For wood surfaced tables and desks you should use an ammonia cleaner or basic wood cleaners, then wipe it down using a paper or disposable towel.

5. Computer keyboard

It might sound like an excuse to get away from the office, but your keyboard is swarming with germs and bacteria. Keyboards are seldom if ever cleaned and have tiny cracks and crevices that make it a great hang-out for germs. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, anything that is commonly and frequently touched carries excessive amounts of germs. Your keyboard is one of them.

How to Clean It

Shake the crumbs out of the keyboard and vacuum it using the handheld tube attached to your vacuum, or even better, a keyboard-specific cleaner like the one found here. Also, wipe it down lightly with an alcohol wipe, but avoid using water.

To keep it clean, wash your hands before using your computer and avoid sneezing, coughing, and eating near your keyboard.

The Takeaway

Germs and bacteria that cause major illness can be found all over your home no matter how clean it might appear. By using the proper hand washing and sanitizing techniques you can help to eliminate and prevent most of these uninvited guests from becoming your permanent roommates.

Photo by Gabriel Rocha (a.k.a. BRIEL)

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