Cleanliness is close to Godliness. At some point or another, we have all heard this phrase. Maybe it was a dear old grandmother or a niggling and annoying aunt. Regardless of the source, since we were children our families have tried to teach us how to be fully functioning, hygienic members of societies. Some of these lessons sunk in, others did not.
We all have our own morning routines. Maybe you are the type of person who cannot wake up properly until you have washed your face. Maybe brushing your teeth is the first order of the day. We do these things because we were taught to, but we also do them because we believe that these small rituals will ensure health and longevity.
Some of them do live up to their name, others are downright harmful. But, how do you sift through all the misinformation to glean the truth? Do you spend bucket loads of money consulting every doctor, specialist, and physician known to man, or do you venture out alone and do your own research?
The chances are that given an endless supply of money and time, any person could dig up dozens of conflicting and confusing reports. In the spirit of dispelling any rumors, lies or untruths, we are going to go on a bit of a journey. Along the way, we will grapple with preconceived notions of health, wage war on old-wives’ tales, and hopefully, come out the other side with the holy grail of hygiene.
1. Frequently used household objects need to be cleaned
Wherever you are, take a look around you. Pick out the objects that you use or touch a few times a day. Got them? The chances are, you have spotted a remote control, the doorknob, your laptop, or even your smartphone. This is by no means an exhaustive list. Now, think of the last time that you cleaned these objects.
By clean, I do not mean that you ran some sort of material across the screen of your phone in an attempt to get rid of that bothersome smudge. I mean actually clean, you know, with soap and water. Chances are, you can’t remember. Because who in their right mind cleans a remote or doorknob, only obsessive-compulsive people right? Wrong.
We have established that these objects are not frequently cleaned. But why is that such a problem? Well, think about everything you do during the day. Think of the people you meet, the places you go and the things you touch. Now imagine bringing a small piece of each of those home with you. These small pieces are none other than germs and bacteria. Even one days’ worth of bacteria and dirt accumulation is enough to make one squirm, but these objects are not harboring one’s days’ worth of experiences. They have been handled by countless different people over the span of weeks or even months.
These objects are veritable cornucopias of dirt and bacteria and they need to be cleaned, at least once in a while. This is not to say that you must go home and drench your entire house with antibacterial detergent. Simply wiping down these everyday objects with a soapy cloth, maybe once a week is sufficient.