COVID-19, Cleaning to Prevent the spread of Coronavirus

When I finish cleaning a home, it has to appear flawlessly clean, which means I've cleaned away all of the yuck you can actually see. 

That's the part people love, the part that makes them feel so good when they walk through the door after a busy day and the part they are happy to pay for. 

But what about the yuck you can't see?

Until recently, my clients didn't give it much thought to germs, bacteria and viruses beyond their own personal hygiene. 

Lucky for them, I have always considered sanitizing and disinfecting the part of cleaning that is my moral obligation, for their health and my own. 

As a seasoned professional cleaner, I take the responsibility of using the most effective cleaning solutions and equipment to disinfect and sanitize my clients home, very seriously! 

My absolute favorite EPA Registered Disinfectant

After countless hours of thought,  I've applied the best practices, to be positive I take zero transfer of any sort of ick from one house to another.

Because I pride myself on attention to detail and do what is necessary to be the best in the business - A month ago, I would have told you that there was nothing more I could possibly do, to be more particular when it comes to my cleaning agenda. 

The details of cleaning all changed when COVID-19 hit the USA

Suddenly, I had to take my attention to detail to a whole different level. To a place that started with my own daily life. 

The preparation began...

Before I even walked out the door of my own house. 

Before I got in my car.

Before I stepped foot into a clients home.

And continued upon exiting a clean home...

Before I opened my car.

Before I could pack a single supply into my hatch.

Before I could get myself in the car to leave. 

I know most of you who are reading this are likely looking for tip for your cleaning routine at home to prevent the spread of COVID -19 and I'm getting there.

From both a business and a personal standpoint, I  can not stress enough, how important it is that we understand that 

 the thought process of making changes in cleaning to prevent the spread of coronavirus, must start outside of our homes.

Before you touch or walk through your door. 

Before you grab that door handle and hop in your car.

Before you decide what disinfectant to use.  

Before you actually clean a darn thing! 

If it does not, you're already behind the eight ball! 
I have a few major concerns for all of us, that start outside our homes, but very much affect us inside of our homes. The two things that tend to go everywhere we go and yet we are ignoring them, completely! 

#1 Our Shoes 

  spreading covid-19 with shoes

Since the minute I heard that the virus can remain in the air for up to 3 hours then settles to a surface, where it can live for days, I have been going out of my mind about our SHOES!  While we have been very careful to do all of the most important things, 
  • Washing our hands frequently
  • Not touching our faces
  • Practicing social distancing 
At the same time we've been walking in and out of stores, gas stations and places of work, tracking the invisible virus into our cars and our homes, via our shoes. 

 How Dirty are our shoes?

(keep in mind, the above article was written before the recent spread of Coronavirus)

Two weeks ago, I was the crazy lady spraying my shoes with disinfectant, because I couldn't stop thinking about the following scenario...
Sally goes to the store to load up on food and supplies, planning to stay home for the next month with her kids and husband.
She spends hours panning meals, puting every ingredient on her list for a month of food. 
She's calculated toilet paper needs so she has enough but doesn't hoard.
 
Sally wore gloves and a mask in the store.  She sanitized her cart.  She was very careful to do everything right! 
When Sally got home, she carried her groceries in, making several trips in and out of her house.

Walking on her floor with the same shoes she wore into the store! 

She takes her shoes off when she's finished making trips in and out.  Then proceeds to walk on her floor for the rest of the day. Before bed, she even walked on it barefoot.  Then jumped into bed for the night! 

Then, about a week ago, my fear came to fruition. As I watched the morning news, there it was. 

Coronavirus can live on shoes for Five Days! 

Really? Nearly a month into this pandemic and we just thought about our shoes being a problem? Deep down I figured shoes must not be an issue, any more than they normally are, or we would have heard about it.  At the same time, I didn't understand how they couldn't be.  I guess it wasn't crazy to be disinfecting my shoes, but in hindsight, I'd rather it would have been!  

Yesterday I read this study, published by the CDC, which states that:  As medical staff walk around the ward, the virus can be tracked all over the floor, as indicated by the 100% rate of positivity from the floor in the pharmacy, where there were no patients.  Furthermore, half of the samples from the soles of the ICU medical staff shoes tested positive. Therefore, the soles of medical staff shoes might function as carriers.  We highly recommend that persons disinfect shoe soles before walking out of wards containing COVID-19 patients.

My intention is not to completely freak anyone out, rather to create some awareness surrounding our shoes. Depending on where you have been, disinfecting your shoes regularly could be a good idea.

My next concern...

#2 Purses

Could Coronavirus survive in our purses

I am in many houses on a regular basis.  If someone is home, I can almost guarantee there is a purse or a wallet sitting on the countertop. (my own house included)

Want to know just how dirty purses are?

When Sally was in the store, she decided not to put her purse in the cart. She kept it on her shoulder just to be sure it didn't touch any surfaces.  

Without even realizing it, she adjusted the strap of her purse on her shoulder several times while she shopped...with her hand, which had a glove on it.  The same glove she's touched everything with. 

Sally also brought her own pen, which she got from her own purse, to cross items off of her shopping list.  The whole time she used the pen, she was wearing gloves.  The same gloves that touched her cart and all of the items she shopped for. When she was done, she threw the pen back in her purse, because it was her's, not the public pen at the store.  

When Sally paid for her food and supplies, she was careful to remove her gloves and sanitize her hands before reaching in her purse for her wallet and handeling her debit card.  She pays with debit, touching the card  reader screen or buttons to enter her pin.  She knows she has to sanitize again because she touched it, but first she puts her card in her wallet and her wallet in her purse. Then applies her hand sanitizer, relieved that she didn't touch her face before she could apply it! 

Sally leaves the store feeling like she did everything right.  She gets in her car, pulls her sunglasses out of her purse and puts them on for the drive home.  When she gets home, she throws her purse on the counter, out of habit. Digs through the purse to find her receipt so she can deduct it. 

She never gives her purse a second thought because it didn't even touch the cart at the store! 

I'm not sure if there is any way to be careful enough these days! 

I think the Stay at Home order and washing your hands frequently, is really your best bet, especially if you fall into the catagory of high risk. 

Continue to disinfect and sanitize all of your surfaces, paying extra attention to those high traffic, commonly touched areas such as 

  • Tables
  • Doorknobs/Locks
  • Light switches
  • Handles
  • Desks
  • Toilets/Flushers
  • Faucets
  • Sinks
  • Countertops
  • Cell phone and house phone
  • Laptop and computer mouse/keyboard
  • Remote controls

If you need an effective disinfectant, click here

By giving a little additional thought as to what we could be bringing into our homes and how, we may be able to do a better job at keeping germs, viruses and bacteria in general, from ever getting in. 

The best thing you can change about your house cleaning routine is taking preventative measures! 

Shoes and Purses are just two things that seem to go everywhere we go.  They are attached to us as we meander in and out of every location, including our homes! 

 Proof Reading Credits to Mary Lou Femrite 

 

 

 

 

 

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