I’m not just referring to getting in the shower or wiping down the kitchen sides after you’ve cooked your dinner, there are so many things that students aren’t great at keeping up-to-schedule on. We all know that the data is out there but often find that it is much easier to just turn a blind eye.
It’s rare that I meet students that stay up-to-date with this and honestly, same but when you take a minute to think about it, it’s grim and you might change your mind. A huge yuck factor comes with the face of a dust-mite, these microscopic creates feed on your dead skin and multiply rapidly, taking refuge in your sheets every night and building their very own army. A further disgusting statistic comes from The Sleep Council as they estimated that “as much of a tenth of the weight of a pillow that has never been washed is made up of human skin scales, mould, dust mites (including dead dust mites) and their droppings.” Just give me a minute whilst I vom! Eczema, asthma and acne are just a few notable conditions that can worsen if you don’t stay on top of your bed linen. So going forward, wash your linen fortnightly and make sure it’s above 60°C to eradicate the problem. Apologies to anyone who feels a bit sick now.
This is another example of knowing that you should be washing them but instead deciding that you want the comfort of your favourite bra for the next three weeks… I hear you sister! Once again, this is not good for you. Lingerie brand Boux Avenue recommend washing after two to three uses to avoid any reactions. It’s worth noting that those figures aren’t based on you doing any exercise though, naturally, if you’ve been sweaty throughout the day, wash your bra. You may think ‘I don’t want to overwash them and ruin them’ but actually you are having an adverse effect. By leaving the garment to mill around, the sweat will actually begin to break down the elastic and therefore reduce the lifespan.
There is no rule-of-thumb for haircare but what is recommended across the board is to avoid daily washing. I’ve been there… getting into the routine and then suddenly, your hair looks greasy the day after and you just HAVE to go in. No, you don’t. Break the cycle! What better time to break the cycle than now when you don’t have to see anyone. Washing your hair every day reduces the natural oils that your body releases and in turn – leads to dry, damaged and greasy hair. Most experts recommend washing your hair every 2-3 days, though if you feel you can make it go a little longer to build up those essentials, I’m backing you. It doesn’t mean you can’t jump in the bath more often, just avoid overdoing your hair.
Student + Cleaning = Unreliable. For some, it’s important to stay on top of cleaning (as it should be) and for others, they could live in squalor for months… don’t be the latter. It’s highly recommended by experts to partake in a full deep-clean, once every week. It’s really not a lot to ask and a quick bleaching of the toilet every day will also go a long way. Choose a dedicated day for the weekly clean – for us, it’s Friday! Getting the house cleaned and ready for you to enjoy through the weekend can be surprisingly enjoyable. Your bathroom’s favourite host goes by the name of E-Coli and it can be found within six feet of your toilet and in the sink, according to Tetro, yum! A weekly deep clean should consist of: Disinfecting the toilet, sink and shower/ bath as well as emptying any bins and cleaning all towels. Plus, cleaning gets a lot more enjoyable when you start using Zoflora – I definitely suggest putting some in your shopping basket.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to add this to your weekly list as well. However, it is important to acknowledge that these appliances don’t clean themselves and as students, we definitely don’t clean them enough. Don’t wait until your end-of-year tenancy checks to start cleaning out a year of bacteria. Experts recommend that cleaning of your fridge should take place every 3-4 months, get it in the diary! This also doesn’t just mean a quick wipe over the shelves… invest in a cooler box that you can put your fridge contents into whilst you tackle the cleaning. From there you should soak each shelf and drawer in hot soapy water. Before putting the shelves back in, make sure that they are completely dried to avoid any collecting of bacteria. TOP TIP: Pop an open box of baking soda on to one of the shelves – this will combat smells and keep odours at bay.
More grim statistics coming right up.
- The average toilet seat produces 500 bacteria.
- A weekly bin collection produces over 4 Million bacteria.
- A fortnightly bin collection produces 240 Million bacteria.
This breeding ground will only continue to grow when you choose to just throw it back next to the house ready for filling again. Yes, it’s absolutely vile and the majority of the time, stinky! But, by ignoring the problem, you’re only leading it into the opportunity of more – maggots, insects, rats and therefore bringing this problem closer to your house than it needs to be. After the bin has been emptied, give it a clean! Start by getting rid of any debris inside the bin, you could use a sweeping brush for this and pop it into a bag once it’s out. After this, use a hosepipe to dislodge any hard bits of muck. Leave it to soak and then empty. Finally, add some disinfectant to the bottom of the bin with some warm water and mop that baby!! The more you do it – the easier it will be.
Devices – Phones/ Laptops/ TVs
Now we all know that students common association are with tech devices – phones, laptops, iPads etc. and these are huge hotspots for growing and developing diseases. Not only do we constantly pick them up and touch them with our hands but we also have the tendency to bring them to our faces, passing on those dreaded diseases and bacteria to our faces. On average, we touch our phones 2,617 a day and take them with us pretty much everywhere. A study of teenagers phones in 2017, saw that a range of bacteria was taking refuge on the devices such as E-Coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus. It’s vile and thinking that we smother that on our faces too is next level yuck. It is also important to recognise the fact that we are also in the middle of a pandemic and the SARS-CoV-2 can hang around on a smartphone for up to seven days. This is why it’s so important to not only be washing your hands after each outing but be giving your phone a wipe down too. For a more ‘deep-clean’, it is recommended to remove your device from its case, wipe with a microfibre cloth, use a wet wipe on the screen before letting air-dry’. This should be done twice-weekly minimum for the highest effectiveness against virus’.