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Disinfecting the home: Frequently-touched surfaces to watch out for

Anjie lou delos Reyes
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought to light the different ways people can get infected by disease-causing viruses and other pathogens.

Disinfecting the home: Frequently-touched surfaces to watch out for
Harmless surfaces and handheld gadgets can be breeding grounds for viruses, making regular disinfection a must for every home, especially during a pandemic

The novel coronavirus spreads via person-to-person transmission when infected individuals disperse respiratory droplets in the air and surface through coughing or sneezing. These droplets contain the COVID-19 virus which can remain viable and active for days.

That is why it is important to carefully clean and properly disinfect frequently-touched surfaces and objects inside the house, especially since for the last couple of weeks, families are isolated in their homes and can be highly susceptible to viruses as they observe quarantine protocols.

Some of the frequently-touched surfaces that people should be wary of are doorknobs, staircase handrails, windows, refrigerator, and cabinet handles, light switches, sofas, beds, pillows, mattresses. These are harmless places where germs and viruses can easily build-up, but could be easily sanitized with disinfectant sprays.

One should also pay particular attention to surfaces which can be a breeding ground for pathogens such as tables, chairs, countertops, study desks—places which people not only frequently touch but also where they usually put down their smartphones and other hand-held electronic gadgets. These could be disinfected using multi-action cleaners.

Remote controls for the TV, sound system, game consoles, and air conditioning unit are ideal carriers for the novel coronavirus since they are the most frequently touched and shared objects among family members. It is best to sanitize these regularly with disinfectant wipes.

Viruses can also thrive in toilet bowls, toilet seats, faucets, shower curtains, mats, and sinks because of the damp surfaces and moist surroundings they provide, while carpets and rugs can easily spread pathogens because people, especially kids, literally walk barefoot and sometimes lay on them. These could be easily cleaned and sanitized using toilet bowl cleaners and disinfectant concentrates which could be used on surfaces undiluted or diluted with water.

Getting rid of viruses from these frequently-touched surfaces and objects requires not only a careful cleaning of organic matter such as germs and dirt, but also regular and thorough disinfection using household antibacterial and multi-purpose cleaners. Get home cleaning products that can kill 99.9% of viruses and bacteria such as Lysol disinfectant sprays and concentrates, multi-action cleaners, and anti-bacterial wipes.

For optimum efficacy, individual products should be used according to instructions found on their labels. It is also advisable to wear disposable gloves while cleaning and disinfecting or wash hands immediately after using disinfectant products.

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