Germiest spots in your bathroom
- Floors: your bathroom floors could be harboring more germs than any other area in the bathroom, says Gina Sloan, Ph.D., director of innovations with Microban. Why? Well, it seems that whatever is close to the toilet is going to get covered in those germy microbes every time we flush the toilet. Do you ever feel a little spritz hitting your bottom or your legs when you flush?
Okay, now I am totally grossed out. I don’t clean my bathroom floors nearly as much as I clean my toilet. That is going to change rather quickly. To reduce the amount of airborne germs when flushing, close the lid before flushing.
Your toothbrush is the second biggest concern for germs in your bathroom, says Sloan.
Your toothbrush takes in bacteria not only from your mouth but wherever you lay it down on.Gina Sloan, PhD, director of innovations with Microban
Your counter-top could be transferring germs but think about where the germs are coming from. Is your toilet close to your sink? Yukola!!
A study from the public health organization NSF International found 64% of toothbrush holders contained mold and yeast, compared to 27% of toilet seats. According to the study they are likely to contain staph as well.
You put in your brush, which is damp or wet, and that residual water drips down and collects in the bottom of the cup. Germs tend to like warm and moist environments. Most holders can go in the dishwasher, which will get rid of any icky residue and germs feeding on it, so toss yours in weekly or monthly. Lisa Yakas, microbiologists
According to the study, sink handles contain more than 600 times more microorganisms per square inch than your toilet handles. Wipe them down with disinfecting wipes or use a bleach solution.
According to the same study, doorknobs contain more microorganisms per square inch than a toilet seat. 1st line of defense is washing your hands for at least 20 seconds. Always wipe those doorknobs during your regular cleaning routine.
Towels have been found to contain bacteria and even harbor E. coli. The germs stick to and hide in the fibers. Change the towels out regularly and wash in a hot cycle; cold water does not wash out the germs.
Knowing everything else I have learned doing the research for this blog, I didn’t have to read the reasons why Loofahs are germ harboring items. Sloan recommends ditching the Loofahs entirely or buy new loofahs regularly.
Sloan recommends air drying your blades or keeping them in oil to resist germ growth. Don’t lay flat in a dish of water; this causes rusting and will enhance even more germ growth. Always stick to using your own razors rather than sharing razors.
University of Arizona researchers found that the average cutting board has 200 times more fecal bacteria than a toilet seat. What??? Now that is one I didn’t expect. Raw meat turns out to be the reason since fecal bacterial originate in the animals’ internal organs. When cutting raw meat on a surface, the knife leaves grooves and sets the stage for germs to sink in and make themselves at home. Washing cutting boards with hot soapy water will help reduce germs growing. If plastic, you can soak in a solution of 2 teaspoons of bleach per gallon of water. Do not soak overnight.
All Kitchens have germs
Did you know that 21% of food-borne illness cases are due to food consumed in private homes, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Kitchens are found to breed germs such as E. coli, salmonella, Listeria, mold and yeast.
Common Kitchen items carrying germs
- Knife Blocks: have you ever cleaned yours?
- Refrigerator vegetable drawers: Salmonella, Listeria, yeast, and mold are partying it up and contaminates fresh vegetables.
- Refrigerator meat drawer: Salmonella, E. coli, yeast, and mold.
- Blender gasket: follow manufacturer’s cleaning instructions to avoid bacteria in your food and smoothies.
- Can openers: bacteria, yeast, and mold. Clean regularly.
- Rubber mixing spatula: remove the rubber tip and clean the inside of it along with the handle that sits in the tip.
- Food storage containers with rubber seals: be sure to wash those rubber seals in hot soapy water; don’t just rinse and dry.
- Sponges: put a wet sponge in the microwave for 1 minute to help reduce germs. Wring out all water after use and place it in a drip dry container or rack.
Other household germy spots
- Washing machines: Run washer empty with a cup of bleach once a week to kill germs
- Mattresses: Wash mattress cover using hot water once a month.
- Trash cans: scrub all trash cans in the house regularly, especially those in the bathroom and kitchen
- Mop heads: rinse with water until water runs clear. Soak mop head in a bucket of 2 gallons of hot water and a cup of bleach for 10 minutes, then rinse again.
Having an air purifier added to your air conditioning and heating systems help to sanitize the air you breathe. I, myself, use one, and it has significantly helped my family from passing illnesses back and forth to each other. If you need a recommendation for an Air Conditioning and Heating company in the United States and Canada, leave a comment and I can see if we have any clients in your area that can help reduce your indoor air pollution.
As always, do the research on the things you have concerns about. I am not an expert, I share information that I come across in hopes that I will inspire healthier, happier lives.