While we wouldn’t blame you even just a month ago for not knowing what COVID-19 is, you’d have to have your head buried in the sand to be ignorant of it now. COVID-19, also known as Coronavirus, has been sweeping through the public consciousness with an unprecedented fury. Classified as a global pandemic, many states and countries are effectively shutting down to prevent the spread of the virus. COVID-19 has spread to all 50 states in the US, Massachusetts included, so it’s important for all of us to do our part in preventing the spread of the virus.
As a professional residential and commercial cleaning company, we fortunately know a whole lot about sanitization. And while we’re not medical experts, we do know how to keep a home clean. If we want to stop COVID-19 from reaching massive levels of infection across the US, we all need to contribute. Are you stuck at home, or otherwise in isolation or quarantine? You can still help. By simply keeping your home (and yourself) clean, you could potentially prevent Coronavirus from spreading to your household.
Here are some things that every Massachusetts homeowner should know about COVID-19:
The Virus is Wimpy Against Soap
Despite the havoc that COVID-19 has been able to wreak, there is some silver lining — the virus, all things considered, is pretty wimpy. We’re not talking about its effects, but rather its constitution. Coronavirus cells are wrapped in a lipid membrane, which makes them no match for soap. While we could list all the scientific reasons for this, the most important takeaway is that regular cleaning products do, in fact, make a difference.
This information is foundational for all the other points we’ll make in this blog. The most important part of preventing COVID-19’s spread is to prevent it from entering your airways. The strategy, then, comes down to two simple things — isolating yourself from areas where the virus may be present, and eliminating it before it can enter your airways.
Coronavirus Can Survive on Surfaces for Days
We mentioned that the trick to preventing the spread of COVID-19 is to stop it in its tracks with sanitation. But, that’s not so easy when you’re dealing with a microscopic virus. You can’t see, hear, or smell it, so how are you supposed to know where it is?
The answer is simple — you don’t. Instead, you just have to be proactive about washing things, in the hope that you’re wiping out the virus if it just so happens to be present. To do that, it’s helpful to know where the virus can be. Did you know that Coronavirus can survive on various surfaces for a few hours to a few days?
Suppose an infected party sneezes — the droplets from their mouth and nose can settle onto a surface and hang out there until somebody else touches it, in which case it’s possible it could spread. If that person then touches their face and breathes in the virus, it won’t be long before they’re infected.
While there is much research being done on COVID-19 and nothing is 100% concrete, recent reports show how long the virus can survive on certain surfaces:
- Copper: 4 Hours
- Cardboard: 24 Hours
- Plastic: 72 Hours
- Stainless Steel: 72 Hours
Frequently Sanitize Certain Areas Of Your Home
With everything above being said, you’ll want to keep your home sanitized with cleaning products, especially those areas that are often touched. We’re not saying you need to deep clean your ceiling twice a day, but keep an eye out for those surfaces that you handle on a frequent basis. Here are some examples:
- Handles and knobs
- Faucets, sinks, and toilets
- Tools and appliances
- Utensils and dishes
- Your smartphone
- Keyboard, mouse, and desk
If COVID-19 were to enter your home, there’s not a guaranteed chance you’d be infected. You would just have to be proactive about not allowing it to spread. By cleaning the above surfaces frequently (and anything else that comes to mind), you give yourself much more of a fighting chance.
Wash Your Hands and Don’t Touch Your Face
You’ve probably already heard this one enough, but its importance really can’t be overstated. For all the reasons mentioned above, it’s absolutely critical for you to wash your hands on a regular basis — as well as everyone else in your home! Kids in particular benefit greatly from this lesson, as they could easily spread the virus without knowing it or showing symptoms.
COVID-19 can survive on various surfaces, and that includes your own skin. But you’re still not infected unless it can find a way inside. Coronavirus needs to get into your respiratory system in order to take hold, which could easily happen if you’re always touching your face. All you need to do is breathe it in, but you won’t be inhaling it if it’s nowhere near your face. If you suspect you’ve touched something that’s infected, the best thing you can do is get to a sink ASAP and wash your hands. You might be able to eliminate it even if you’ve come into contact! This is why you’re hearing about this so much on the news — it really is the best thing you can do to protect yourself.
Soap or Hand Sanitizer?
Because hand sanitizer is one of the mythical items that has seemingly disappeared from store shelves all over the country, people assume that it’s necessary in order to combat the virus. This isn’t actually true — in fact, normal hand-washing soap is actually far more effective.
That’s not to say that hand sanitizer doesn’t work; it’s certainly better than nothing. The experts recommend hand sanitizer products that have at least 60% alcohol. If you’re vigorously rubbing your hands with such a product, there’s a good chance you’ll stop Coronavirus in its tracks, but there’s no substitute for good ol’ fashioned soap and water. If the latter is available, always use it.
Practice Social Distancing
Where people gather, things get messy. As a residential house cleaner and commercial janitorial team, we know this all too well at Clean Pro. You’ve probably heard the words “social distancing” quite a bit in the last few weeks, and as inconvenient as it may be, it really is the best thing we can do as a society to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
Social distancing, in a nutshell, is avoiding contact with large groups of people and not going out in public unless it’s absolutely necessary. It’s important to note that social distancing shouldn’t be confused with total quarantine or isolation. Social distancing doesn’t mean you can’t go outside under any circumstances, or take a trip to the grocery store if you need supplies — it simply means limiting your activities so you’re not frequently engaging with groups of people.
It would be irresponsible, for example, to go out to a crowded beach or have a big party outside. But if you want to take a walk through the neighborhood or enjoy a stroll through the woods, go for it! The difference between those things isn’t being outside, it’s the number of people you’re doing it with. Social distancing, above all else, is a matter of common sense. We’re practicing it as much as we reasonably can here at Clean Pro, and if everyone in Massachusetts does the same, we can hopefully avoid widespread contamination.
Stay Safe Out There
As COVID-19 spreads rapidly through the northeast, we all need to be vigilant about staying sanitized. At Clean Pro, we’re taking it day-by-day. As Massachusetts experiences a state-wide lockdown, it is unclear to what extent our businesses will be offered in the coming days and weeks, if at all. But whether we’re doing professional cleaning or staying at home, we’ll be sure to follow all the guidelines mentioned in this post. If you do too, we have a chance at beating this thing together. Stay safe, everyone, and be sure to contact us today if you have any questions for Clean Pro.