Tips to Avoid Coronavirus Viruses and Germs:
This is not an exhaustive list, but meant to be a jump start to begin thinking about the things you touch that could bring undesired viruses or germs into your environment.
There is no need to fear germs or viruses, you can have power over your environment through simple avoiding things you needn’t touch and cleaning those things you need to bring into your living space.
Keep in mind you have oils on your hands that adhere germs and viruses and help them spread within your surroundings. Carrying from item to item then increases the likelihood of someone more susceptible to illness coming in contact with them. The more avoiding and cleaning you do, before you touch other things, the better.
Asking others to wash their hands before they touch anything belonging to you protects you and them. Asking others to wipe off their phones and other items they bring into your environment is not rude, but practical. If you come and go from your environment, or others come and go into your environment wipe off your door handles, and other surface areas inside your home, work or car.
- Wipe off the cart, or basket handle and surface area you may touch
- Pick up items using a tissue or disinfectant wipe; if you can, wipe off as much of the surface as you can before placing in the basket or cart
- Place your grocery bags in an isolated area of your car
- Consider the points under “BRINGING IN AN BAG, BOX, or ENVELOPE into your home” when you return home
- Remember to throughly wash your fruits and vegetables with mild dish soap and water before placing them away in your home. ( Some people like me, also touch eggs inside the styrofoam container in the store to check for cracked eggs- it isn’t a bad idea to rinse off the eggs and drain inside the styrofoam container before placing them container inside your refrigerator.
- Hand your debit card to drive-through attendant
- Take the time to throughly wipe off the debit card with a disinfectant grade wipe immediately after attendant returns it to you
- Take bag from attendant and place on an isolated spot on the floor board of car
- Wipe off the Drink Cup before placing it in the Cup Holder.
- Open one end of the straw and without touching the straw, place the open in into the drink top and then remove the paper from the other end to drink/ clean your hand before touching the cup, straw , steering wheel, window or any other item
- Wipe off your steering wheel and roll up your window, and place wipe back into disinfectant container ( if applicable) before pulling away from the window
- Consider not using the provided napkins, or asking the attendant to not place napkins in your bag to minimize the things you need to touch
BRINGING IN A BAG, BOX, or ENVELOPE into your home.
- Pre- determine where items from outside your home will be placed ( seldom used counter top, floor, etc) for “ unloading”.
- Place items on the pre- determined location and as you unpack each item, wipe off the exterior of the bag, box, or envelope with a disinfectant grade wipe.
- If removing items from inside a bag, box or envelope, remove and if applicable, immediately throw the bag, box or envelope away.
- Don’t forget to wipe off the counter top where you placed the items to unpack them.
- Wash your hands after everything is unpacked.
- If you have ventured out around members of the community, upon returning, immediately remove the clothing you worn out, place in the laundry where no one else will come in contact with them.
- Wash your hands before touching anything inside your home.
- Redress in clean clothing.
COMMON THINGS TO AVOID TOUCHING “ bare handed”
- Tables, Counters, Door knobs, Payment Terminals, Railings, Fences, Gas Pumps, Signature Screens, Keyboards, Mouses, Toilets, Remote Controls, Light Switches,
- Receipts, Print Outs, Brochures, Flyers, Mail, Groceries, Grocery Bags, Napkins
- Shaking Hands, Hugging
Wipe down any chairs, tables, or other surface areas you come in contact with unless you know who has touched them and can guarantee they are clean .
Use a household cleaning spray or wipe. If the surfaces are dirty, clean them first with soap and water and then disinfect them.
Keep surfaces clean, even if everyone in your house is healthy. People who are infected may not show symptoms, but they can still shed the virus onto surfaces.
After you visit the drugstore or supermarket, or bring in takeout food or packages, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water. Do the same thing after you pick up a delivered newspaper.
Here’s a guide to how long coronaviruses — the family of viruses that includes the one that causes COVID-19 — can live on some of the surfaces you probably touch on a daily basis. Keep in mind that researchers still have a lot to learn about the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19. For example, they don’t know whether exposure to heat, cold, or sunlight affects how long it lives on surfaces.
Metal 5 days
Examples: doorknobs, jewelry, silverware, car and house keys, golf clubs, strollers, wheel chairs
Wood 4 days
Examples: furniture, decking
Plastics 2 to 3 days
Examples: packaging like milk containers and detergent bottles, subway and bus seats, backpacks, elevator buttons
Stainless steel 2 to 3 days
Examples: refrigerators, pots and pans, sinks, some water bottles, car and house keys
Cardboard 24 hours
Examples: shipping boxes
Copper 4 hours
Examples: pennies, teakettles, cookware
Aluminum 2 to 8 hours
Examples: soda cans, tinfoil, water bottles
Glass Up to 5 days
Examples: drinking glasses, measuring cups, mirrors, windows
Ceramics 5 days
Examples: dishes, pottery, mugs
Paper up to 5 days
The length of time varies. Some strains of coronavirus live for only a few minutes on paper, while others live for up to 5 days.
Coronaviruses can live on a variety of other surfaces, like fabrics: clothing, furniture, care seats, cushions, seat belts, purses.
Keeping your family Safe is important and your children can help . Using fun and play , consider taking this time in history to educate your children about viruses, and how viruses can spread . Consider making it fun using washable finger paints, washable invisible inks to see where things you touch stay put and where they ” travel to”.