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Everyone avoids touching the obvious dirty things - like anything in that truck stop restroom. However, there are commonly used items in your own home that often fall under the radar that can be a threat to your health. We may not even realize these threats exist even as we rub on our faces on them and even roll around underneath them at night.
Here are the surprisingly dirty things in your home and what you can do about them:
In the Kitchen
Sponges: Kitchen sponges soak up bacteria and food particles and trap them in the crevasses of the sponge, creating ideal conditions for bacteria to breed.
What to do: Soak sponges at least once a week in bleach solution for 5 minutes or microwave on high for 2 minutes (The microwave method has been proven to kill 99% of bacteria!)
Kitchen Buttons, Knobs & Handles: We all have done it - cut up raw chicken or any other raw meat and then touched the handle on the faucet to wash our hands. Even if you take something from the fridge, grab spices, preheat the oven, zap something in the microwave, that raw chicken has contaminated more than you think!
What to do: Use a disinfectant on any frequently used kitchen surfaces several times a day - especially before and after preparing a meal. To make cleaning a little easier on you, try keeping antibacterial wipes right on the counter for easy access.
Drip Coffee Maker: Shocked? We were too! Surprisingly, most home coffee makers don’t get hot enough to kill anything growing in the wet, dark environment of the water reservoir or deep inside the internal piping of the machine.
What to do: Run a 50/50 mix of water and white vinegar through the machine once a month to help inhibit the growth of mold and bacteria. Let half the mixture run through the machine, and then switch it off for an hour before finishing the cycle. And don’t forget to deep-clean the pot!
In the Bedroom
Pillows: After a long day, there’s nothing like resting our tired heads on our pillows - turns out they are home to several types of allergy-inflaming fungi! Just try to remember all those hours you have spent sweating, shedding skin and drooling like a Rottweiler, creating ideal conditions for dust mites, and other allergy triggers.
What to do: Anti-allergen covers can help protect pillows from outside germs getting in and keeping the allergy stuff inside.
Sheets: Take all the reason’s from the pillows above and turn up the volume by adding sweat into the mix. You can sweat up to one liter per night…yeah, ick.
What to do: Wash and dry everything on the highest heat setting your machine has. A good hot wash and a dose of bleach will not only kill the bacteria on the cloth, but will also clean out the machine so germs aren’t constantly spreading around.
In the Bathroom
Makeup and Makeup Brushes: Ok girls. We shouldn’t get diseases for making ourselves look amazing, but cosmetics have been known to do just that! As a matter of fact, eye make up seems to be the greatest cause for concern. One study found that within just three months, 40 percent of mascara tubes hand some creepy crawlies growing inside them! Going to check yours when you get home? Yeah, me too...
What to do: Replace make up every season. Toss the lotions and liquid foundation every six months and get fresh powder-based products, such as lipstick and nail polish every 2 years.
Towels: We shower to get clean so why get dirty by drying off? By reusing a damp bath towel you could be doing just that!
What to do: Change towels about once a week and make sure they dry completely between uses.