Date: April 10, 2020

Author: Kathleen Boziwick

Coronavirus, or COVID-19, is at the forefront of most people’s minds right now. With businesses and schools largely shut down, people are spending more and more time at home in pursuit of social distancing to prevent the spread of the disease. Part of that effort also needs to be disinfecting the home — some people have no choice but to go out, and can bring the virus back home with them.

Here are some ways to disinfect and clean the home and hopefully prevent the virus from surviving in the isolated atmosphere.

First, wash hands well

Hands obviously touch so many things, so keeping them clean needs to be a top priority in preventing COVID-19 spread. UNICEF has put out a step-by-step guide to proper hand-washing, including the following:

  • Wet hands
  • Apply enough soap to cover the hands
  • Scrub the entire hand for at least 20 seconds
  • Rinse thoroughly
  • Dry with a clean cloth or towel

Proper hand-washing is the best line of defense when it comes to cleaning in the home. But there are more steps from there.

Cleaning the house

Entrepreneur has offered a handy step-by-step guide to cleaning the house during the pandemic for maximum safety and cleanliness. The whole house should get a full cleaning regularly during this period of social isolation. Any time something in the home has been exposed to potential contagions — shoes that were worn on an outing, a counter where grocery bags were placed, etc. — it should get a thorough cleaning.

This includes using alcohol-based disinfectants or sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol content. Proper wipes and cleaning supplies are at a premium in stores right now and often hard to find, so a homemade mix of dish soap, salt, and lukewarm water can do the trick in a pinch.

Be mindful of surprise surfaces that could carry pathogens — a light switch, a bowl where keys get tossed, the door handle. These surfaces are some of the dirtiest in the home, and don’t always get thought of when considering high-risk surfaces.

Always remember to change gloves between tasks or when start/stopping a job. Using gloves when grocery shopping is all well and good, but if those same gloves hold a phone and then the phone touches bare hands before being washed, the gloves haven’t done much to help.

Date: April 10, 2020