Do You Spring Clean?

Not so long ago, the spring clean was considered essential, but today probably only one in two households undertakes this annual ritual. Our lives are too busy, we couldn’t be bothered or just don’t think it is necessary.

Perhaps it’s not a bad thing. Rather than focussing on cleanliness during a single season, it’s better to be on top of dirt the whole year round. But do we really do it? Many people clean with a bacteria-infested dishcloth that hasn’t been disinfected for over a fortnight. This is worrying, as a single bacterium on a damp cloth can multiply to six million within only eight hours and, apart from causing bad smells, can trigger a nasty bout of gastroenteritis, too.

Cleaning does not have to be a complicated affair. Even the simple mechanical effect of washing a surface can help remove material that can build up and harbour microbes. Couple this action with a good disinfectant and you are really starting to keep the microbes under control and help to stop the emergence of smells and odours. You could clean bathroom and kitchen tiles with a cleaner that has ‘neutral pH’ on the label. Or then simply mix baking soda and water for a homemade cleaner: Pour 1/2 cup baking soda into 2 gallons water and mix very well. Then apply the liquid with a string mop or sponge mop. When it comes to counter tops, you can poultice away rust, remove soap scum or mildew with a solution of 1/2 cup ammonia in a gallon of water. For most coffee or juice stains, you can use a little hydrogen peroxide in water, plus a few drops of ammonia.

Whether you have a pet or not, and whether it is at a specific time of the year or whenever the condition of the house demands it, clean your house. Polish, wash, wipe down. Not only will everything gleam and glisten, the effect will be cathartic and make you feel like you have accomplished something. 

If, like many pet owners, you find the most suitable place to keep your pet’s food dishes and sleeping basket is in the kitchen:

  • Don’t allow pets onto counter tops – grubby paws can harbour all sorts of germs.
  • Keep a disinfectant spray close to hand and use before preparing food.
  • Don’t feed pets at the dinner table so they learn the only place they are allowed to eat is at their own food bowl.
  • Keep your pet’s food area clean – only serve enough for a single meal so left-overs don’t act as a magnet for flies. If your pet is a messy eater, place a wipe-clean mat under their bowls.

Comments are closed.