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Part of what makes the fall and winter seasons so fun is the activities. During these months there is one event after another. This provides us with the opportunity to commune with our family, friends, neighbors, and communities. From pumpkin patches and hay rides to pictures with Santa, we get a lot of exposure to others.
We also tend to see an increase in traffic to our homes with holiday parties, deliveries, and trick-or-treaters. However, with all of that togetherness, we have a greater risk of catching a pesky cold or even the flu. So, how do we keep the germs at bay this season? Here are a few quick tips for a healthy home.
A Healthy Home for You
Of course, the last thing you want is to feel under the weather when your favorite holiday events are happening. To help ensure that you don’t fall pray to germs we all know we should wash our hands frequently, avoid close contact with those who are sick, get plenty of rest, and eat a balanced diet. We hear this advice often. What is less common, however, is how to manage your household during this season.
A Healthy Home for Guests
If you’re like me and rarely get sick. It’s important to consider others. Not only other members of your family, but guests that come into your home. People’s exposure to germs and immune systems can vary drastically. For someone like me who works at home, I have less exposure than most. Simply because I require less trips outside of my home. For my husband, however, its a different story. He might interact with 50 different people during his day who may or may not be sick.
Or, you may have a friend or family member that has a compromised immune system due to chronic illness or other issue. It’s these people you want to consider when you’re cleaning and maintaining your home during the cold and flu season. Just because your environment doesn’t make you sick, it could very well effect someone else.
Health Home Tips
Here are a few tips to keep a healthy home this season for you, your family, and your guests.
- SANITIZE HOT SPOTS WEEKLY – Identify the places your fingers touch most often and make sure they’re not only clean, but sanitized. These are light switches, door knobs, the back of chairs, counter tops, cabinet and drawer pulls, faucets, the buttons on your coffee maker, appliance handles, and of course the toilet.
- NO SHOES RULES – If you’ve just spent a good chunk of time cleaning and sanitizing your home, the last thing you want is for someone to track in who knows what on the bottom of their shoes. Beyond dirt, there’s bacteria. Keep it out of your home by setting up an entryway area where people can place their shoes. Also, have some guest socks on hand in case they’re needed.
- TRASH OUT – Take your trash out daily. Don’t let it pile up because you don’t want to go to the dumpster, garage, or side of the house in the cold. Decomposing food in your garbage will begin to smell. And while this may be unpleasant, the real risk is attracting bugs and mice. Bugs can bring all sorts of bacteria into your home that can make you sick. So, make the extra effort to get trash out of your home frequently.
- WASH HAND TOWELS FREQUENTLY – Changing out or washing the hand towels in your bathroom is important. Let’s face it, not all of us “lather vigorously for 15 seconds” to kill that 99.9% of bacteria when we wash our hands. That means there’s a high potential for things remaining on your hands to transfer to your towels. To combat this, make sure you change up a few times per week.
- CLEAN AFTER GUESTS – If you’ve just hosted a dinner party or had friends over to watch a football game its a good idea to re-sanitize areas guests frequented after they leave. I understand that if you just spent an hour cleaning your home in preparation for your guests, the last thing you want to do is clean again after them. However, its important to remember that new people can unintentionally bring new germs. So take a few second and grab your sanitizing wipes and hit the hot spots again.
- MONITOR LEFT OVERS – Thanksgiving in particular may leave you with a fridge full of left over food. Make sure you promptly package and store food in your fridge or freezer to stop the growth of bacteria. If you don’t see yourself eating the item in the next 2 days, its best to place it directly into the freezer. That way you can store it safely for a longer period of time.
- COVER BUFFET AND FAMILY STYLE DISHES – As lovely as it is to see a beautiful spread of colorful foods and desserts. Don’t leave them open to the air too long. Take a picture for Instagram and then cover them back up. Lots of people breathing on communal dishes is not a good idea. Buffet restaurants have sneeze guards for a reason, so take a cue from them and keep your food covered.
That’s it for my healthy home tips. Please share this post with a friend if you found it helpful and follow Dianne Decor on Bloglovin’ for more content.
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