Flu season is far from over. We usually experience a peak between December and February, but it can last as long as May.
One way to protect yourself is the flu shot. In addition to that, deep cleaning your home can help to eliminate the spread of hidden germs.
According to Ellen Watson from You’ve Got Maids, if you’re mindful of where the germs are harbored, you can disinfect and kill them before they’re transferred to you.
So she outlined the top 5 places where bacteria breeds in your home:
- Door Knobs & Handles: “Opening the fridge, getting a drink, all those germs are being spread,” Watson said. “A lot of times, just the front of the oven handle is cleaned-- you want to make sure you get underneath, where your fingers are gripping, to help decrease the spread of the germs.”
- Light Switches: “Those germs really harbor on light switch plates,” Watson explained. “We’re just flipping them on, flipping them off. A lot of times people just do the outlet covers, but you want to [clean] the actual flipper, top and bottom.”
- The Phone: “You’re setting it down on the counter, in the bathroom when you’re washing your hands.” Watson recommends cleaning your cell phones and iPads at least once a day, especially if your kids use them.
- TV Remote: “We’re relaxing, laying down, you might be eating, your hands carry so many germs,” Watson said. “So you want to make sure that you’re getting the front, the back, the sides, as well as the on and off button-- that’s the button that you use the most.”
- Toilet Bowl Handles: “People often think about keeping the toilet bowl clean, their counters, but the handle for some reason can easily be missed.” And, Watson made a good point: the toilet bowl handle is the last thing you touch before you wash your hands.
Other places where germs like to gather: bathroom towels, your kitchen counter, dish sponges, the kitchen sink, toothbrush holders, pet bowls and toys, stove knobs and bathroom faucet handles.
More on the flu:
- FDA warns Purell to stop claiming its hand sanitizers can stop flu, Ebola
- Is the flu shot working? We take this and other flu-related questions to the experts
- Flu cases up more than 30% this season, according to MedStar
- Flu 2019: 5 things you need to know
- ER, urgent care, doctor's office: Breaking down the costs