Being sick is the worst. There’s not much you can do besides take your medicine, try to rest and feel better. And once you finally are feeling better (FINALLY!) your home can still feel clammy and sick itself. These are the 6 major things you should focus on cleaning (once you’re feeling up to it, of course!)
1. Start With Your Bedding
You still need to sleep here at night, you know! And when you’re sick, you tend to sweat a lot while you sleep. The covers often feel clammy or damp and we’re sure you’ve done your fair share of nose blowing, sniffling, coughing, and/or sneezing in there. While you’re sick, try to put an extra sheet under your fitted one to absorb some of the extra moisture and take care of your mattress. An extra pillow case or other protector will also preserve your pillow. If you’re feeling really unwell, ask a spouse or one of the children to do this for you.
When you’re no longer sick, strip the bed and wash your covers, sheets, pillow cases – everything – in hot water to kill any lingering bacteria and replace your bedding with fresh linens. If there is any blood, vomit or other undesirable substances on your bedding, treat with a trusted stain remover before washing. But wait a while to throw on fresh sheets, you want to give your mattress some time to air out.
2. Points of Contact
A point of contact is any surface that you (or someone else) touches frequently. This means that everything you or the sick person touches, coughs on or sneezes at will need to be disinfected. Think light switches, tv remotes, laptops, door knobs, drawer handles, the handle on the toilet, the knobs on your tap. There is a difference between just cleaning and actually sanitizing a point of contact.
Use a good quality cloth, we recommend microfiber, because you don’t want to leave any residue behind. Spray the surface with a disinfectant spray and let it sit on the surface for five or ten minutes. Wipe it with your cloth and make sure no water marks are left behind because this means bacteria may be left behind as well. This may be more difficult on things like keyboards or light switches. In those cases, just wet the cloth with disinfectant spray and wipe on these surfaces.
This is where everything happens when you’re sick, which is why you need to give the bathroom some special attention. If you use hand towels, wash them immediately. Also toss in any towels or robes in the wash with them and remember to wash on the hottest cycle to kill those germs! Spray all surfaces with your disinfectant spray and let it sit for a few minutes because most sprays take at least 30 seconds to kill bacteria. Focus on the toilet and countertops. Wipe down garbage cans and let your toothbrush soak in hydrogen peroxide for about 30 minutes to kill any bacteria there (or simply buy a new one).
Focus on any dishes you used while you were sick – even if that wasn’t many – and run the dishwasher. Make sure you’ve gotten any tea mugs or bowls of soup from other rooms where you may have fallen asleep before finishing them. Wipe down the counters and key points of contact (fridge handles, everyone!) with your disinfectant spray. Wipe down the garbage can (think used tissues) and toss in a new garbage bag.
If possible, wash all of the clothes you wore while you were sick in hot water. These will most likely be your pajamas, but make sure you get everything. If it cannot be washed in hot water, consider adding a few drops of a disinfecting essential oil (such as lavender or tea tree oil) to the wash.
Get Rid of the Sick Feeling Without the Work
If you’re on the mend but still don’t have the energy to clean everything up yet, you can always hire a professional cleaning service for a one-time, all-over cleaning and sanitizing service. If you’re in the New York City area, contact 1st Class Cleaning and get the ick out of your home!