As time goes on, researchers and experts learn more about COVID-19. Recently, a report was published that finally confirms that the virus that causes the disease does indeed spread through airborne transmission. It’s these discoveries that empower us as we battle this pandemic, and they will teach us some practical steps to protect ourselves from the worst that the disease can offer.
One of those steps is making sure to thoroughly clean and disinfect the places we spend most of our time in. If there has been a recent COVID-19 outbreak in your home, here are some essential tips for sanitizing and disinfecting your home.
Make sure your home is well-ventilated
Since what we’ve always known is now confirmed—that COVID-19 can be transmitted through aerosol droplets that can remain suspended in the air—one of our biggest shields is a well-ventilated home. Here are some tips for doing that:
- Open your windows. This is the simplest, easiest way to get rid of viruses and other allergens and pollutants in your home. Bring as much fresh air into your home as possible. If your home lacks windows, consider hiring local awning experts who can help you install some aesthetically pleasing windows and awnings to extend your home’s outdoor living area.
- Maintain your HVAC systems. Ensure that every air duct and filter is replaced or, at the very least, spotless and sanitized.
Arm yourself with the right gear
Now that your home is properly ventilated and fresh air is being let in, it’s time to wear the proper protection while you clean. It doesn’t matter if you were a caregiver or if you also had COVID-19 yourself—wear a mask, gloves, and even a face shield while cleaning. This will protect you from fomite transmission or those tiny droplets that remained on surfaces when an infected person coughed, sneezed, talk, and even breathed. Wash your hands thoroughly with water and soap before and after you do some cleaning.
Choose EPA-approved products
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a list of cleaning products that won’t cause harm to our health and the planet. It’s crucial to use these products because many of our traditional cleaning products don’t often disclose ingredients that may be harmful to our health, and opting for more natural and eco-friendly cleaning materials might be a safer choice for those of us who want to be more conscious of the things we consume. And not only are these products safer for us humans; they’re kinder to the Earth’s atmosphere, too. Get a clean wiping cloth as well.
Prioritize common areas and patient rooms
Here are some tips for disinfecting the home:
- Spray some disinfecting products on commonly touched surfaces like doorknobs, tables, light switches, levers, and everything multiple people in the house touch daily.
- Leave the product for about 30 seconds and gently wipe it down with the cloth.
- Make sure to follow the ingredients on the products before you use them.
- If multiple people share bathrooms, be thorough when you wipe down high-touch surfaces as well.
- Spray some hand sanitizer or alcohol on tiny items the patient used, like lip balms, water bottles, and other deeply personal items.
- Decrease chances of contamination between surfaces. Since COVID-19 is an invisible enemy, we need to take cautionary steps to ensure that we limit the possibility of airborne particles contaminating different areas of the house.
When you should clean
The following are timelines to remember when it comes to disinfecting your home when someone has tested positive for COVID-19:
- Clean high-touch surfaces regularly. Once a day is good if there are less than three people in the home, but if people come in and out of common areas regularly, encourage everyone to do their own sanitation when done, especially in the toilet. Empower those who can fend for themselves to take those precautionary measures.
- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that you can be around others ten days after your first symptoms. Consider hiring professional cleaners to do some deep cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting in every area of your home because there’s only so much you can do with your products and tools. Cleaning professionals have the resources to ensure that every area of your home is spotless, so consider employing their services to give you a clean slate.
Cleaning, staying home, and being vaccinated are key to making sure that this virus is eradicated forever. Protect yourself and your family by being meticulous about your home and its indoor air quality.