Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Green Cleaning: the Smarter, Healthier Way to Fight Germs

Green Cleaning: The Smarter, Healthier Way to Fight Germs
Author: Laura Carey

The biggest problem with germs is that you can’t see them! Even if your home looks spotless, large numbers of viruses, bacteria and fungal spores are almost certainly living and breeding there. Thankfully, not all of these microscopic interlopers cause disease, but to protect yourself and your family from harmful germs you need to get rid of as many as possible.

Green Cleaning is just as effective as using traditional cleaning methods but is much kinder to the person doing the cleaning, other people and pets, and the wider environment. Once you adopt some simple Green Cleaning strategies you will also find that they often enable you to clean quicker and easier. Here is a Green Cleaning plan to help you win the battle against germs:

1) Choose Your Weapons Look for environmentally friendly cleaning products that contain only natural, biodegradable ingredients. They kill germs as well as detergents and disinfectants containing toxic chemicals but are much less likely to trigger allergic reactions or cause other health problems. Does your vacuum cleaner suck up germs at one end only to blow them out at the other? If so, consider replacing it with a more hygienic model. Use microfiber cloths, dusters and mops that pick up and hold bacteria with a single wipe. Conventional cleaning accessories often only move germs across surfaces before releasing them into the air.

2) Know Your Enemy Some of the facts and figures about germs are truly alarming. Did you know that a single bacterium can multiply to six million in just eight hours? Understanding how they move around, and what conditions suit them best, gives you the advantage of being able to stop them before they make themselves at home. For example, knowing that germs can survive for limited periods on dry surfaces, but need moisture to thrive and multiply, will remind you why you shouldn't leave damp towels lying about.

3) Plan Your Campaign Start by giving your whole home a thorough, deep clean, paying special attention to all those cracks and crevices where germs are normally left undisturbed. Deal with one room at a time and clean systematically so you don’t make extra work for yourself by re-contaminating clean areas.

4) Keep Them Out Once your home is as clean as you can make it, aim to keep it that way by guarding against further germ invasions. Germs come into your home on the air, on people, pets and practically everything you bring inside. It’s impossible to stop them all, but you can slow them down. A good dirt-trapping doormat, and taking off outdoor shoes when you come in, will stop germs picked up in the street from spreading throughout your home. Close the toilet lid before flushing to prevent germs escaping from the toilet bowl.

5) Strike Fast The battle against germs is never-ending, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend hours rubbing and scrubbing. Target your everyday cleaning at places that are especially attractive to germs. Wipe up food spills and visible dirt without delay. In most homes, the greatest concentration of germs is found in the kitchen sink. Develop the habit of quickly cleaning the sink after each use and you will drastically cut the number of germs available to spread to the rest of the kitchen.

Green Cleaning is all about making the modern home cleaner and healthier using simple, natural products and efficient techniques. The only losers are germs!

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About the Author: Laura Carey is the director of First Class Cleaning & Maintenance Limited, a Romford-based green cleaning company offering domestic and commercial cleaning services throughout Essex and London. For more information visit

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