Toothbrushes, remote controls, salt and pepper shakers -you may not give much thought to it, but certain household objects and surfaces are veritable nests for germs and other micro-organisms. Here are 10 things you need to clean regularly to stay on top of your home hygiene.
Kitchen sponges contain thousands of germs as well as significant quantities of bacteria. The authors of a 2017 study which appeared in Scientific Reports recommends cleaning them after every use and changing your sponge at least once a week.
2) The fridge
Outside of kitchen utensils, the fridge is the main environment for microbes in the home, especially due to the fruit, veg and meat compartments, which are not always the cleanest. The bacteria present on food can contaminate other foods which can in turn lead to food poisoning.
3) The sink
According to a 2011 study, researchers found coliform bacteria on sponges, tea towels and on kitchen sinks. These are a group of bacteria including E. Coli and Salmonella, which can cause food poisoning.
This same 2011 study revealed that after sponges and kitchen sinks, kitchen worktops were one of the areas most contaminated by coliform bacteria.
5) Chopping boards
According to the same 2011 study, chopping boards were the fourth worst culprit when it came to microbes, after sponges, sinks and worktops.
When it came to bathrooms, toothbrushes were the objects that were most contaminated, outside of face cloths (according to the 2011 study), which is why it is recommended that you change your toothbruth at least every three months.
7) Toys -especially soft toys
According to an American study published in 2013, children’s soft toys were real nests for bacteria. Their results showed that 80% of the soft toys analysed carried dangerous germs: pneumococcals.
8) Salt and pepper shakers and spice containers
According to a study published in 2008 by researchers in the University of Virginia, containers used in the kitchen for seasoning foods (salt and pepper shakers, herb and spice containers, etc.) were hosts for germs and bacteria. They found the cold virus on some of them.
9) Remote controls
Given that the remote is often passed by hand from person to person, it is perhaps not surprising that it is a veritable germ-fest, with its surface 50% covered in germs, according to the Virginia study.
10) Computer keyboards
Computer keyboards used by several people are at particular risk, according to a 2009 study, in which the authors recommended regular cleaning.