How to Clean Effectively During Cold and Flu Season

We think of our home as a safe haven, but even if you’re healthy, you could be bringing outside germs into your home. The best line of defense? Taking extra care to clean thoroughly during cold and flu season.

Television remote controls are a frequently handled “hot spot” that should be cleaned during cold and flu season. (Photo courtesy Rolf van Mells on Flickr)

Pay Attention to “Hot Spots”

Think about the items you touch multiple times per day – faucets, door knobs, toilet handles, and light switches, for example. Use a spray disinfectant such as Lysol on these surfaces, and wipe down using a cloth or paper towels. Another hot spot you might not think about? Television remote controls and electronics. Take care to wipe between buttons on remotes and keyboards, and aim to sanitize your phone daily.

Sanitize Sheets, Outerwear, and Gloves

Wash your sheets and pillow cases in hot water once per week. You’ll also want to sanitize outerwear like jackets and gloves, especially if it’s visibly soiled. Cotton gloves can be tossed into the wash, but even more delicate fabrics like wool can be hand-washed in warm, soapy water.

Clean Your Cleaning Products

Keeping a space clean is impossible when you’re using dirty supplies. Disposable cleaning products like paper towels and Swiffer mops and dusters ensure a clean slate every time. If you’re interested in environmentally friendly, reusable products, make sure to sanitize them in between uses: wash dish towels, clean mop heads in hot, soapy water, and soak a dirty sponge in a solution of bleach and water for five minutes.

As always, we think prevention is the best option for colds and flus. Practice good hand-washing habits to help mitigate the spread of viruses, and stay active, which can boost immune function.