With the prevailing enhanced community quarantine, our homes became our safe havens — with most of our family’s activities, including work and school taking place within its confines.
Since our homes are pretty much our world these days, the next question we have to ask is how to keep it clean and safe still in the days to come. Here are a few things we need to know:
How do we keep the coronavirus from entering our homes?
To start, we must ensure to keep our homes clean and coronavirus-free. Wipe down and disinfect all surface areas including doorknobs, light switches, counters, and faucets.
The next step is to take the necessary precautions to ensure that the virus will not be brought inside your home by implementing a “coming home” routine that everyone in the household should follow. This includes:
- Using only one entry point into your home — preferably one near a sink and remind everyone to wash their hands before proceeding inside. Stock your sink with hand wash or soap and paper towels
- Put up a sign or remind everyone to remove their shoes upon entering your home. You can also put a shoe rack near your doorway for this purpose. Shoes could have been in contact with surfaces wherein people could have coughed, sneezed, or even spit, so its best to take it off.
- Lastly, ask everyone to clean and disinfect their “high touch” items in the sink area before proceeding inside. This includes their keys, wallet, mobile phone, and even bag. You can put disinfecting wipes and alcohol in the area for this purpose.
At the same time, if you’ve come from a “high risk” area such as the hospital emergency room or the doctor’s clinic, remove your clothes before proceeding into the main part of your home and put them straight in the washing machine or a bucket with bleach with water. Don’t put it with your other dirty clothes. Then proceed straight to the shower.
How do we ensure that we don’t get infected when out getting supplies or that our groceries or supplies do not have COVID-19?
We can get infected via droplets from an infected person or if we touched an infected surface and then proceeded to touch our eyes, nose, or mouth without washing our hands. So when out doing your groceries, it’s best to avoid touching your face until you’ve washed your hands or used a hand sanitizer or alcohol. You can also bring alcohol spray or disinfecting wipes to wipe down your car’s steering wheel, dashboard, and door handles, and even your grocery cart. Place your grocery bags in your trunk and not inside the car.
Upon arriving home, leave your grocery bags in the doorway or if you have an assigned “disinfectant zone” (which can also be near the sink stated above. Wash your hands and change your clothes first. Then, armed with a bleach spray and dry rag or disinfecting wipes, you can wipe down cartons, cans, and even plastic wrappings of your groceries as you put them away. If you’ve used eco-friendly grocery bags, put them straight to the washing machine or a bucket with bleach and soap. You can wash and dry plastic bags as well before storing or reusing them.
Cleaning supplies are getting harder and harder to come by, what can I use instead?
You can make your own disinfecting spray or solution by:
- Mix ⅓ cup of Zonrox to one gallon of water (or 4 teaspoons per quart).
- Fill a spray bottle with the solution — which you can then use to spray on your groceries and high-touch surfaces.
- Moisten paper towels with the solution, fold, and keep in a sealed container — which you can also use to wipe down surfaces.
Can I still have visitors?
Enhanced community guidelines discourage mass gatherings or for anyone to leave their homes unnecessarily, so this might not be the best time to entertain or invite visitors into your home. Plus, you have to consider that anyone who enters your home is potentially infected, so if ever you do have visitors coming in, they should also follow the protocol specified above and do still try to practice social distancing.
What if someone in your household gets the virus?
If someone in your family starts to manifest symptoms related to COVID-19, such as coughs, colds, fever, or diarrhea, then you should isolate that person. Click here to learn more about how to self-isolate if you’re part of a large household.