Although it may not be nice to think about, our homes are far less clean than they appear to the naked eye. The Covid-19 Pandemic has made us all far more conscious about washing our hands and making sure surfaces are well cleaned, but are we doing enough to keep our homes safe and sanitary?
While it may not be possible to give your home a hospital-level clean every day, knowing which items are particularly problematic will ensure that you always wash your hands after touching them. Here are the dirtiest common household items you should be aware of.
1. Remote Controls
It is perhaps no surprise that the items which you touch the most are the most prone to bacteria build-up and your TV remote is right there at the top of the list of most dirty household items. As well as being handled a lot, remote controls have loads of nooks and crannies for grime to collect and bacteria to fester. As you can see in the below graph of swab tests by comparethemarket, remote controls came only behind supermarket trolleys and takeaway containers out of every item tested. Wiping the remote with a disinfectant cloth now and again can help somewhat, but you should always wash your hands after using the remote before snacking down on your popcorn.
2. Tablets and Laptops
As with remote controls, tablets and laptops can get very grimy because they work by touch. Particularly with so many people working on their computers and devices all day, the problem has become even worse than previously. Washing your hands regularly throughout the day is very important if you work on a computer, particularly before you go on your lunch break. Never use disinfectant spray on electronics because this can damage them. Instead use a disinfectant wipe and this will kill off some of the bacteria.
Cellphones are incredibly dirty and a major reason why this is so bad is that we use them all the time. Many of us check our phones up to 100 times a day, but it would not be feasible to wash your hands every time. Instead, make sure you wash your hands or use sanitizer regularly throughout the day, and particularly before you eat. Furthermore, try to reduce the number of times you look at your phone because the reality is we all check them far too often.
Probably the least surprising item on the list, and one which most people might expect to appear higher, doormats are pretty gross which is why it is always better to have them outside your front door rather than inside. Vacuuming the doormat regularly and scrubbing it with hot soapy water occasionally will get off most of the dirt, but one way to ensure that people don’t tread muck into your home is to impose a no-shoes rule. In the vast majority of Asian countries, people always take their shoes off inside, and this trend is now starting to catch on in the West too.
Keeping your home clean requires more than just regular vacuuming and wiping down surfaces. Knowing the worst hotspots for dirt and bacteria is crucial to keep your home sanitary, but even more important is that everyone washes their hands on a regular basis.