In the United States alone, COVID-19 has affected millions of people and been the cause of death for over 400,000 people. Families are understandably fearful of coronavirus for their own well-being and the lives of their loved ones. They want to protect themselves and their families from the disease.
With proper home cleaning and disinfecting measures, you can prevent COVID-19 from getting in your home, making you feel more at ease during what can be a frightening time.
The Difference Between Cleaning and Disinfection
When it comes to limiting the spread of coronavirus, two actions are imperative: cleaning and disinfecting. While the terms may be used interchangeably, they are not the same, but both are important.
When you clean a surface or material, you are reducing the amount of dirt and germs it contains. Cleaning does not completely remove or kill germs. When you disinfect a surface or material, you are killing the germs present. The combination of the two actions are especially effective at preventing the spread of coronavirus, other illnesses, and germs.
First, you should conduct cleaning in order to decrease the amount of germs as much as possible. Then, you should follow up with disinfecting to kill any germs that remain.
Prioritize High Touch Surfaces and Objects for Home Cleaning
Coronavirus can be spread directly from person to person via respiratory droplets. But these droplets can also make their way onto surfaces and materials, which then become contaminated. After touching contaminated surfaces, people can become infected if they touch their eyes, nose, or mouth before washing their hands. This is why you should avoid touching your face, especially with unclean hands.
Knowing this, when doing home cleaning and disinfecting to prevent COVID-19, prioritize high touch surfaces and objects. This can include things like doorknobs and handles, light switches, faucets, sinks, toilets, phones, keyboards, remote controls, countertops, tables, and more.
Before you start cleaning, make sure you are wearing the proper protective gear, such as gloves.
First, clean the surface with soap and water or a specialized cleaner. If you are using a specific cleaning product, follow the provided instructions. Afterwards, use a household disinfectant that has been approved for use against SARs-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus, following the directions provided on the product label.
Be sure to pay attention to what kind of surfaces the product is approved for use on. Not all products are effective on all surfaces and materials. For example, disinfectants for soft surfaces will vary from those approved for hard nonporous surfaces.
Cleaning and Disinfecting Electronics
The standard cleaning practice of using soap and water will not cut it when it comes to cleaning electronics. Because of this, you should refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and disinfecting. If no information was provided, you can use sprays and wipes that contain no less than 70 percent alcohol. Furthermore, there are cleaning wipes available that are specifically catered for safe use on electronic devices.
Practice Good Hygiene
Cleaning surfaces and materials is important, but it is just as essential that you and others in your home practice good hygiene. When you practice good hygiene, there is a lesser risk for contamination and the spread of germs to others and your household surfaces and objects.
Wash your hands using warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds. Hand washing should always be done in the following instances:
- Before and after preparing food
- Before eating
- After using the restroom
- After coughing, sneezing, and/or blowing your nose
In the event you are unable to wash your hands with soap and water, sanitize your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains no less than 60 percent alcohol. However, this should be a last resort, as hand washing is always preferable. Furthermore, you can sanitize your hands afterward to provide better protection against spreading germs.
You should also refrain from touching your face, particularly with dirty hands. As aforementioned, people can become infected with COVID-19 when they touch their face after coming into contact with a contaminated surface. The germs can enter your body via your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Disinfecting New COVID-19 Strains
It is common for viruses to mutate over time and this has happened with the coronavirus. A new mutated strain that was discovered in the U.K has made its way to the U.S. Experts are saying that this new strain is 50 percent more contagious than the current form of the virus. There are not many cases involving this new strain of the coronavirus yet in the U.S., but experts are warning that this strain may come to account for half of all new COVID-19 cases by March.
New lockdown requirements may appear due to how fast this highly contagious strain of the coronavirus can spread. Fortunately, the disinfection and cleaning tips discussed above are just as effective against the new strain of coronavirus.
Professional Disinfection Services
The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded everyone of the dire importance of practicing good hygiene and conducting regular cleaning and disinfecting. By performing such actions, you can prevent COVID-19 from getting into your home. These same measures can be taken in businesses, office spaces, and other larger commercial settings. However, cleaning and disinfection can prove to be a more difficult task in larger properties.
If you need cleaning and disinfecting help for your home or commercial property in Washington, D.C., then ServiceMaster NCR can help. We provide cleaning and disinfection services for homes, apartments, commercial settings, offices, government buildings, and military bases. Our professional technicians wear essential personal protective equipment (PPE) and use EPA-approved products, focusing on high touch areas and surfaces. We can help protect your home or business from all strains of the coronavirus with our disinfection services, including the new strains.
With help from the disinfection services of ServiceMaster NCR, you can prevent COVID-19 from spreading throughout your home or workplace.