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How to Clean Your Home: Hygiene Hacks

Category: home and DIY

The hacks you need to know.

We all love spending time at home, but our living spaces can be a breeding ground for germs. Keeping your home clean, fresh and sanitised is key to maintaining your family's health. Hygiene around the home can be a difficult thing to manage.  All the little nooks and crannies that collect grime and bacteria can be a challenge to clean properly. Dirt often accumulates in spaces you don't even notice. 

Studies by The Hygiene Council show that many of us struggle to identify potential health hazards within our own homes, as the worst offenders are not always the most obvious suspects. Generally, people only notice that an area needs cleaning when the appearance or odour of the area is affected, but cleaning goes beyond this. Proper disinfection and cleaning are essential in places like the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom where bacteria can easily spread to your family.

Here's a rundown of all you need to know about healthy cleaning and bacteria hotspots in your home that fly under the radar. Wherever your focus, the below infographics form a simple guide to creating a hygienically clean and healthy home. Print them out and place them around your home for easy reference.

In the Kitchen

Home Hygiene

It's no secret that keeping your dishes clean and discarding out of date food is crucial to maintaining a clean kitchen.  But the very thing that helps keep your kitchen clean could be your biggest hindrance. Dishcloths are notorious for trapping bacteria. They're often left wet and are used for all sorts of cleaning tasks around the kitchen- this is an environment which causes bacteria to thrive. Dishcloths should be changed every week, and regularly cleaned throughout the week. According to The Hygiene Council, 86% of dishcloths harbour unsatisfactory levels of bacteria.  As well as changing your dishcloths regularly, chopping boards, handles and microwave controls should also be cleaned often. Your dishwasher should be cleaned at least once a month to prevent dirt and grime build up that would leave your dishes less than sparkling.  Strong vinegar is your friend here. Pour 300mLs of vinegar into a mug and place this upright in your dishwasher on a hot cycle.  This process will sterilise your dishwasher continually throughout the cycle and produce the best results. 

In the Bathroom

Home Hygiene

The bathroom is another room in the house which hosts plenty of harmful bacteria in unexpected places. As the bathroom remains damp a lot of the time, this can be a difficult area to keep clean.  Vinegar is your best friend when it comes to disinfecting bathroom surfaces. The wash basin is a major host of bacterial colonies which can be harmful to you and your family. To clean the basin, use a cloth soaked in vinegar. Towels and face cloths can very easily become unhygienic, as they sit damp most of the time.  Change towels and cloths every week, and open your windows daily to give your towels a chance to dry out. The most effective way to quickly rid towels of bacteria between washes it to put these in the microwave for 3 minutes. This will reduce the number of bacterial colonies from 59 million to one million. 

In the Bedroom

Home Hygiene

The number one focus in the bedroom should be on the bed itself. Although the bedroom doesn’t have to be cleaned as often as other areas in the house, the bed can become riddled with dust and mites if not cleaned properly. The Hygiene Council recommends you clean bed sheets and pillow cases once a week.  This prevents a build up of dust, which can be harmful to your health and respiratory system.  Pillows should be completely replaced every six months to one year to prevent an unhygienic build up of dead dust mites, droppings and carcasses. Don't forget to disinfect TV remotes and computer keyboards often, as these can also be home to a plethora of bacterial colonies. Computer keyboards sometimes hold nearly 150 times the healthy quantity of bacteria and are five times dirtier than a toilet seat. Air conditioning filters should also be replaced monthly to keep the air in your home clean and free of dust.

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