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Where Germs Like to Hide - Tips for Staying Healthy...

With flu season approaching, we try our best to stay healthy and avoid getting sick, but it's not enough to just wash your hands regularly and stay away from those who are ill.  There are also some unexpected places that germs hide that we do not always think of.

The following is a list of hidden germ spots, along with tips and tricks to stay safe and healthy year round:

Cell Phones

Believe it or not, cell phone carry more germs than toilet handles!  To keep your phone free from bacteria, wipe it down with an antibacterial wipe at least one a week.

Grocery Carts

Most of know that shopping carts handles are full of germs, but did you know that studies have found diarrhea bacteria on the handles, as well?  Before you begin your shopping, rub the cart handle down with sanitizing wipes before putting your hands on it.  Thankfully, most stores have picked-up on this now and offer wipes right next to the carts. 

Your Computer

Your keyboard and mouse can harbor millions of germs from constantly being touched by your hands.  It is not enough to just dust your computer or laptop off once in awhile, you need to disinfect it regularly.  To do this, simply use a disinfectant spray — such as Lysol — and spritz your keyboard and mouse with it daily.

Pens at Banks

We all know that these pens are not being cleaned and they are being handled by hundreds of people every day.  Your best bet is to have your own pen ready to sign checks and paperwork and if you must use theirs, keep a hand sanitizing gel in your purse or car for quick disinfecting.

Kitchen Towels

Washing and drying your kitchen towels isn't enough to keep germs at bay.  Studies have found that hand towels carry E. coli, salmonella, and flu viruses.  To properly clean your kitchen towels, add 1/2 bleach to top loader washing machines or a 1/3 of a cup to front loader washing machines and wash on the hottest setting.  The bleach will kill any remaining illness-causing bacteria.

Handbags and Backpacks

Lunch boxes, purses, and backpacks carry a ton of germs, so you need to make sure that you keep these clean, as well!  Regularly launder these items and spray them down with distinfectant spray daily.

Anna S.
One should be careful about too much disinfection of germ containing surfaces for two reasons. Firstly, many of the disinfecting substances, such as triclosan, are toxic and perhaps more harmful than the germs themselves. Secondly, an immune system, especially a developing one, such as a child's, needs to encounter some bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens in order to develop appropriate immune responses when more serious pathogens are encountered. Over-disinfection of environmental pathogens - an overly clean environment - can lead to the development of autoimmune disorders.
Thanks for reminding me, Colleen! I'll add that right now :))
Colleen L.
Also, don't forget to Lysol kid's backpacks, lunch boxes and your purses.
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